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Cover image for A kids' guide to the American Revolution
A kids' guide to the American Revolution
Other title(s):
American Revolution


First edition.
New York, NY : Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2018]
Physical Description:
207 pages : illustrations, maps ; 22 cm.
Introduction : The birth of a new nation -- The notorious thirteen colonies -- Inching toward revolution -- A kid dies in Boston -- Weirdest tea party ever -- This means war -- The first shots -- Head and shoulders above the rest -- Thinking big : the Declaration of Independence -- We have a Declaration -- Back to the war, and it's not looking good -- Keeping the flame of revolution alive -- And more war -- The world turned upside down -- Surprising the whole world -- What happened next? -- The power of the Declaration.
Packed with anecdotes, sidebars, time lines, and illustrations by Anna DiVito, this title, gives young readers a comprehensive look at the birth of our nation.
Reading Level:
Ages 8-12.
Conference Subject:
Added Author:


Call Number
J 973.3 Krull 2018
973.3 KRULL

On Order



Packed with anecdotes, sidebars, quotes, and illustrations, A Kids' Guide to the American Revolution brings vividly to life the birth of our nation.

Introduce young readers to the stakes, challenges, setbacks, and victories involved in the single most important event in our nation's history, the American Revolution, with this approachable book from Kathleen Krull, a Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award winner.

Find out what events led our young nation to go to war with Great Britain and how the Declaration of Independence, the document that continues to shape our civil rights, came to be.

* Why did the colonists want independence from Great Britain?

* What brought on the Boston Tea Party?

* How did the Declaration of Independence initially impact women and slaves?

* What did Benjamin Franklin do to convince the French to join the revolution?

* How was George Washington chosen to lead the new young country?

* What elements of the Declaration of Independence continue to be debated today?

Kathleen Krull is an expert at bringing history to life in her engaging titles and series, including Women Who Broke the Rules, Lives of . . . , Giants of Science, and her other books in A Kids' Guide series, A Kids' Guide to America's Bill of Rights and A Kids' Guide to America's First Ladies.

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8-Krull takes the American Revolution by the horns and drags it out of the doldrums. Her chatty prose shows it for what it was-a gutsy "blowup between a parent figure and unruly children" that was "deadly, messy, scary, and suspenseful." Oh, and did we mention world-shaking? Chockablock with interesting incidents (see "The Crucial Lee Resolution," when "It was an appropriate time to be twitchy"), and fascinating factoids such as "the median age of the colonists was 16," this is a history book that can be read for pleasure. How interesting to discover the Stamp Act meant not postage fees, but the fee for an official stamp on "anything made of paper"-books, licenses, contracts, newspapers, and court documents included. Sidebars include brief biographies of variously famous and unknown personages, quotes from contemporaries and later historians, and tidbits to whet the appetite for more. The main focus of the text is dedicated to the daring and the determination on the part of the rebelling colonists. And to the lasting, powerful message of the Declaration of Independence. Krull does touch on slavery, racism, the use of black troops, and on the decisions made by various Native American tribes who had little reason to favor any white government. However, the generic use of the terms Indians and slaves is disappointing. VERDICT An eminently readable look at a rebellion for large collections.-Patricia Manning, formerly at Eastchester Public Library, NY © Copyright 2017. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

A portrait of the Revolutionary War as a family spat that got out of hand.In a savvy effort to make the war more accessible to young audiences, Krull begins by characterizing it as a "blowup between a parent figure and unruly children." She then goes on to trace its course from the Stamp Act to the Treaty of Paris. Glib and readable as her overall account may be, though, it's so frequently interrupted by discursive anecdotes and "Wise Words" from both participants and such modern savants as Hillary Clinton and Lin-Manual Miranda (the latter in an amusingly bowdlerized quote) that it's often hard to keep track of events. More problematically, her language is afflicted with a pervasive parochialism that comes out both in her repeated use of the term "slaves" and, notwithstanding a proper acknowledgement of the influence of the Iroquois Confederacy on the political thinking of the Declaration's drafters, several references to Native peoples as generic "Indians." She does remember the ladies as well as African-Americans who fought on both sides, and she closes with an inspiring appreciation of the ways ideas expressed in the Declaration of Independence have gone on to affect the histories of this and many other countries. In her line drawings DiVito adds tongue-in-cheek notes, portraying George Washington as Captain America, for instance, and tucking a few extra heads among those on Mount Rushmore.A patchy, unusually wrong-footed outing from the deservedly esteemed historian. (maps, index, source list) (History. 10-13) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Booklist Review

Following her historical overview A Kids' Guide to America's First Ladies (2017), Krull turns her attention to the American Revolution. As the author leads children through an easy-to-comprehend chronology of the war from the colonization of the New World and the growing division from England to the establishment of the Continental Congress and decisive battles she also introduces key figures and their roles in the revolution. In the process, Krull dispels many myths (e.g., Paul Revere was captured by the British before he could finish his now infamous ride) and considers the treatment of women and slaves during this time period. Plenty of sketches, quotes, and tidbits of information (for instance, the jackets of British soldiers were probably red because it was the cheapest and easiest color to produce at the time) keep the subject lively. The final chapter looks at life in the U.S. following the revolution, such as the tragic fate of Indian nations, and the legacy of the Declaration of Independence. Krull's concise guide captures the essence of this pivotal war.--Leeper, Angela Copyright 2017 Booklist