This book for young readers introduces California Senator Dianne Feinstein as seen through the eyes of her kindergarten-age granddaughter. Senator Feinstein's life as a government official is presented in a manner that is designed to provide some rudimentary background information regarding what an elected public official actually does. The reader is also provided with some biographical information related to Senator Feinstein's past social and governmental service in her home state. Much of the text deals with how Senator Feinstein balances the pressures of national service with the demands of being a grandparent. The read along or aloud text is supplemented with color photographs that capture Senator Feinstein and her family at work and play. Although the love and admiration Senator Feinstein's granddaughter, Lisa, feels for her is evident in this book, the premise simply does not wash. To begin, the book does not appear to be the work of a kindergartner. Secondly, the concept is one that is very narrow in scope. Most people's grandmothers are unlikely to be a people filling a national political office. Further, the manner in which the text and photographs are presented makes the book read more like campaign literature than a children's book. The reader is left with a feeling that they have just completed a political infomercial rather than a story. 2000, The Millbrook Press, Ages 5 to 8, $22.90. Reviewer: Greg M. RomaneckChildren's Literature
One of the "Grandmothers At Work" series, this book is narrated by six-year-old Eileen Feinstein Mariano. Her grandmother is United States Senator Dianne Feinstein. The photos and brief text on each page give a start-to-finish civics lesson on the electoral and legislative processes. In addition, there are plenty of endearing pictures and quotations that show the personality behind the public figure. Readers "travel" with Eileen to Washington, D.C. to learn what her grandmother does on Capitol Hill, and accompany her "Gagi" on "recess" back to California where they explore San Francisco, play the piano, and draw beautiful pictures together. This format is especially appealing to young girls. 2000, Millbrook Press, $7.95. Ages 8 to 12. Reviewer: C. Leonard-Schmidling SOURCE: Parent Council Volume 8
Gr 3-4-Dianne Feinstein, California Senator, is seen through her granddaughter's eyes, with one half of the book covering her professional activities and the other her grandmotherly interactions. The color photographs on every page are clear and bright and provide interesting glimpses of these behind-the-scenes aspects of life on Capitol Hill. However, the first-person voice gets to be a bit much, especially the commentary accompanying a photograph of the granddaughter as an infant during the 1992 Senate race. Photographs abound of grandmother/granddaughter explorations of San Francisco. Eight of nine tips for any readers who want to be senators are realistic, but the first one, "Work on a campaign," might not be practical for this book's audience.-Frances E. Millhouser, Chantilly Regional Library, VA Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.