Children's Literature - Gisela JerniganYoung adult and older readers should definitely come to understand and appreciate Thomas Jefferson after reading this carefully researched and detailed account, which brings the man and his times alive with its use of many quotes from the extensive writings of Jefferson and some of his contemporaries. This biography is objective in that Jefferson's weaknesses and idiosyncrasies, as well as his many talents, interests and accomplishments are presented, and it is inclusive in that the words and deeds of many of his friends, family members and colleagues help create a broad, complex picture of the time. Black and white photos, drawings, maps, a family tree, a chronology of his life, an index, and extensive notes and bibliographies add to the authenticity and value of the book. 1997, Aladdin, (originally
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 7 Up Jefferson has been briefly described in a number of series biographies, especially for younger grades, but he has, surprisingly, been neglected as a subject for young adults. Bober's excellent biography does more than fill that gap. She presents a portrait of a very human, immensely gifted man who lived at the critical time of the formation of the American polity. An insatiable reader, he absorbed the learning of his time (happily the period of Enlightened thinking) and directed his energies to the law, the government, and the arts of living. His achievements in public life as well as in the private sphere were equally impressive. But Bober does not spare readers the sorrows and griefs of his family life, the criticisms leveled against his public policies, or the self-doubts, financial troubles, and sometimes tempestuous but always honorable emotional life of this charming man. Using Jefferson's own writings, quotations from contemporaries, documents and historical data, she has constructed a marvelously readable and informative biography that breathes life into an ``American hero'' and shows him as the person he must have been. Shirley Wilton, Ocean County College, Toms River, N.J.
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