by Susan Allen
Leslie Harrington, illustrator
Inside Jacket: Ronald Reagan was a natural leader, well-remembered not just for his political leadership, but also for his warmth, dignity, and optimism. There’s a lot kids can learn from Reagan, about our country and about being good leaders and good people. The Remarkable Ronald Reagan is a fun, colorful look at his life, from his humble beginnings as the son of a shoe salesman, to his years as a Hollywood actor, his service in WWII, his work as California governor, and the culmination of his political career in the Oval Office.
First Sentence: Do you ever wish you could grow up to be a football player or a movie star?
What it’s About: The Remarkable Ronald Reagan: Cowboy and Commander in Chief is a biography of Reagan’s work life, most of which was in the public eye. Beginning with his humble beginnings Reagan worked hard and tried many new things. In high school, a young Ronald first stepped onto a stage. He was a lifeguard for seven years and played football in college. In Hollywood, Reagan co-starred in his first movie with a chimpanzee. Reagan served in the Army during WWII making training films. He then meets his wife and soon begins his public service career. Regan worked hard to make all of his dreams come true and one day became President of the United States.
My Thoughts: Many children today have only heard of Ronald Reagan from a textbook and maybe their parents. The Remarkable Ronald Reagan retells so much of Reagan’s life history that children can get a good glimpse of the man. He was a dreamer and found a way to make all his dreams come true, not by going to Disney Land, but by hard work. As President, he wanted the entire country to dream of big things because he knew they were possible.
The Remarkable Ronald Regan: Cowboy and Commander in Chief is a wonderful biography. The illustrations are amazingly accurate in portraying Mr. Reagan. The illustrator uses bright, expressive colors to portray Reagan in every aspect of his life. Children could take this well researched book and write a very good biography of a President they can now come to know in a much more personal way.
Kids will like the story of Mr. Reagan. Dreaming big, Reagan’s favorite thing, helped bring the Berlin Wall down, something no one ever thought possible. He even became good friends with Mikael Gorbachev, turning the Russian into a part-time cowboy. Instead, the author has put much life into the book, bringing the fortieth president to life for a new generation.
One last section lists Important Things Ronald Reagan Said. Many quotes are here for kids . . . and parents. Some are funny:
“A hippie is someone who looks like Tarzan, walks like Jane, and smells like Cheetah.
“But there are advantages to being elected president. The day after I was elected, I had my high school grades classified Top Secret.”
Some are Wise:
“We can’t help everyone, but we can help someone.”
“A people free to choose will always choose peace.”
“Freedom is never one generation from extinct.”
“If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on earth.”
I think kids will enjoy this biography. Along with a wonderful story bringing out all of Reagan’s highpoints, the last several pages carry a timeline that offers more detail into Ronald Reagan’s life. I was never a into politics as a child or into history, but a book like The Remarkable Ronald Reagan: Cowboy and Commander in Chief would have caught my attention and kept it. Kids will find this book easy to read and understand, and possibly more important for school, they will find the information easier to retain. Every elementary and middle school library needs to have a copy or two of this book.
by Susan Allen website blog facebook twitter
Leslie Harrington, illustrator website blog facebook twitter
Released June 17, 2013
Ages: 7 to 10
© 2013 by Regnery Kids, used with permission
Text: Copyright © 2013 by Susan Allen
Illustrations: Copyright © 2013 by Leslie Harrington
Regnery Kids is an imprint of
BOOK DONATED TO LOCAL PUBLIC LIBRARY