Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Eleanor Roosevelt: An Inspiring Life

Eleanor Roosevelt: An Inspiring Life

Elizabeth MacLeod
Nonfiction  Series
For ages 8 to 12
Kids Can Press, 2006   ISBN: 978-1553377788

No one thought much of Eleanor when she was a little girl. She was shy and not very attractive, and she did not speak out when she was made to do things that she did not like. Who would have thought that such an awkward little person would change to become a woman who would set a glowing example for people all over the world. And yet this is just what happened.

This transformation took time of course. Eleanor had to navigate through the difficult waters of young adulthood, married life, and then motherhood. Along the way she developed a keen sense of duty. She felt very strongly that she should do what she could to help others and that life should not simply be about surviving, but that it should also be about learning, experiencing, and doing your best in all things. Because of these beliefs, she worked hard to help her husband in his political career, and then she took on projects of her own, doing what she could to help those who were poor, hungry, injured, who were discriminated against, and who were living without hope.

Eleanor forever changed the role of First Lady and she gave women from all walks of life the courage to build lives for themselves, lives that gave them a feeling of fulfillment and self worth.

In this beautifully and cleverly presented book readers will be taken on a journey into the life of one of America's most extraordinary women. Each double page spread has a section of text, and across the page there is a whole page of annotated photographs, and illustrations. The effect is that these graphic rich pages look very much like pages out of a scrapbook. There is much to look at and readers will find that they get a very real understanding of what Eleanor was like and what it would have been like to live in her times. They get to meet some of people who were important to her and to see many of places that she visited during her lifetime.

This is one of the titles in the excellent "Snapshot Biographies" series.