Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

John F. Kennedy: The Making of a Leader

John F. Kennedy: The Making of a Leader

Ritu Upadhyay, Editors of Time For Kids
For ages 7 to 9
HarperCollins, 2005   ISBN: 978-0060576035

There is no doubt that from a very early age John Fitzgerald Kennedy, or Jack as he was known to his family and friends, was a very determined little boy who knew how to get what he wanted. Often his methods were simply downright devious, other times he had to use his fists. Then he learned how to make a good argument for his own cause through words and this would be a lesson that he never forgot and that he would use to great effect when he began to get involved in politics when he was a grown man

Despite having all sorts of debilitating health problems plucky little Jack did his best to keep up with his elder brother Joe Jr. and with the rest of the children in his large family. It always was a struggle and Jack hated living in the shadow of his clever, strong and athletic older brother. Jack persevered though and then, by an unfortunate twist of fate, Jack became the eldest child in the family and the one whom his father, Joe Sr. pinned his hopes on.

After serving with courage in the navy fighting for his country in World War II, Jack came home and went into politics. Joe Sr. was determined that a Kennedy was going to the first catholic president of the United States and what Joe Sr. wanted he got. What he probably did not understand at first was that his wayward and delicate son was going to be a president whom no one forgot; Jack was going to make the world sit up and take notice of him though his own dedication, his intelligence and his sheer charisma.

The author and editors of this excellent biography for younger children have created a book which will surely peak the interest of its readers. With lots of photographs, large text and boxes and side bars full of interesting facts, the book has made the story of John F. Kennedy interesting and very accessible.