of the Center for
|The Bulletin Dozen is a monthly theme-based list of titles available only on-line. Since we're awfully fond of bakers here at the Bulletin, we thought we'd adopt their philosophy of generosity and throw in an extra one or two when we have them to offer--so don't expect an even dozen. Please feel free to copy, download, or link to these lists. We ask only that you cite the source. See the archive for lists from previous months.|
A Yankee Doodle Dozen: In Honor of the Fourth
selected by Deborah Stevenson
With the Fourth of July coming up, we thought it was time for an All-American Independence Day dozen. That's a broad enough term and a short enough list that the selections offered aren't intended to be definitive or complete so much as suggestive, representative, and, we hope, useful. So if you're trying to think of some nationally themed titles beyond American Girls and Dear America, here are some tastes of these United States.
--Deborah Stevenson, Associate Editor
- Philip, Neil, comp. American Fairy Tales: From Rip Van Winkle to the Rootabaga Stories; illus. by Michael McCurdy. Hyperion, 1996. Gr. 6-10.
The fairy tale may be traditionally considered a European genre, but Philip's collection of a dozen stories demonstrates that Americans such as Washington Irving, Frank Stockton, and Carl Sandburg put their own cultural spin in the format. (BCCB 9/96)
- West, Delno C. Uncle Sam and Old Glory: Symbols of America; by Delno C. and Jean M. West; illus. by Christopher Manson. Atheneum, 2000. Gr. 2-5
The Wests offer a gallery of familiar images ranging from Uncle Sam to the American Bald Eagle, providing a digestible portion of history and information on each. (BCCB1/00)
- Sattler, Helen Roney. The Earliest Americans; illus. by Jean Day Zallinger. Clarion, 1993. Gr. 5-8.
In this oversized and appealingly illustrated investigation, Sattler traces the history of life in this part of the world from early immigration twenty millennia ago through the changes in habitation to the creation of nations and cities. (BCCB 6/93)
- Provensen, Alice. My Fellow Americans: A Family Album; written and illlus. by Alice Provensen. Browndeer/Harcourt, 1995. Gr. 4 up.
This personal and resonant collage of significant Americans in a variety of categories ("The Fourth Estate," "The Wobblies and the Miners") offers piquant quotations, memorable visuals, and an intriguing breadth in a compact 60-page picture-book format. (BCCB 1/96)
- Jaffe, Steven H. Who Were the Founding Fathers? : Two Hundred Years of Reinventing American History. Holt, 1996. Gr. 7-10.
Relevant images support the author's examination of the changing face of the founding fathers as subsequent generations engaged in reinterpretation and employment to suit their own needs. George Washington as U.S. Mint spokeman, anyone? (BCCB 11/96)
- Karl, Jean. America Alive: A History; illus. by Ian Schoenherr. Philomel, 1994. Gr. 5-8.
While no survey's going to please everybody, Karl's 120-page overview of this part of the hemisphere covers the high points from the Bering Strait crossing to Bill Clinton's 1992 election; Schoenherr uses the margins for extensive portraiture of various named and unnamed Americans over the centuries. (BCCB 10/94)
- Brenner, Barbara. If You Were There in 1776. Bradbury, 1994. Gr. 3-6.
Period images combine with cultural details to bring life in that critical year home to young readers. (BCCB 6/94)
- Maestro, Betsy. Coming to America: The Story of Immigration; illus. by Susannah Ryan. Scholastic, 1996. 6-9 yrs.
This picture-book survey looks at all kinds of immigration, including prehistoric as well as recent, forced as well as intentional, with images that add personality to the history. (BCCB 2/96)
- St. George, Judith. So You Want to Be President? ; illus. by David Small. Philomel, 2000. Gr. 3-5
This rollicking and informative picture book gives the lowdown on over two centuries of national leaders. (BCCB 7/00)
For more about this book, read this month's Big Picture.
- Hamilton, Virginia, ad. The People Could Fly: American Black Folk Tales; illus. by Leo and Diane Dillon. Knopf, 1985. Gr. 4-6
This classic compilation provides a connection to one of America's most important traditions: folklore. (BCCB 7/85)
- Osborne, Mary Pope, ad. American Tall Tales; illus. by Michael McCurdy. Knopf, 1991. Gr. 4-7
McCurdy's strong-lined tinted woodcuts provide the perfect complement to Osborne's gallery of American folk heroes such as Sally Ann Thunder Ann Whirlwind, John Henry, and Paul Bunyan. (BCCB 1/91)
- Panzer, Nora, comp. Celebrate America in Poetry and Art. Smithsonian Institution/Hyperion, 1994. Gr. 5-10.
An elegant and inspiring collection pairs art from the National Museum of American Art with American poems, creating thought-provoking and memorable juxtapositions as well as introducing readers to resonant visual and verbal images. (BCCB 10/94)
- Cohn, Amy L., comp. From Sea to Shining Sea: A Treasury of American Folklore and Folk Songs. Scholastic, 1993. All ages
A treasury indeed, this volume offers 400 pages of lore from various corners of America, illustrated by fifteen important contemporary artists. (BCCB1/94)
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