I combed through Susanna Leonard Hill‘s nonfiction picture books and couldn’t believe “Worst of Friends” hadn’t been reviewed! So here goes…
“Thomas Jefferson and John Adams were the best of friends, even though they were completely different.”
They shared similar ideas about how the thirteen colonies should become a nation—until they stopped seeing eye to eye on the powers granted the president. Thus begins a legendary feud between the Federalist Party and the Republican Party.
What happens to their friendship? Well, I guess you just have to read the book if you don’t know.
The illustrations, including George Washington eating dinner calmly between JA and TJ while they argue, should bring smiles to children’s (and adults’) faces.
And the ending? Well, the truth rivals anything a fiction writer could ever dream up. Thomas Jefferson and John Adams die on the same day, July 4, 1826, the 50th birthday of America’s independence.
I love this story. It makes me cry every time I read it. Sniffle….
The extensive bibliography will guide children’s further research into the lives of these two men, and its hilarious foreword titled: “Can Presidents be Pals?” should pull readers into the story. It’s appropriate for grades K-5.
Themes: U.S. History. Friends who are very different can work together. It’s good to extend an olive branch to a friend before it’s too late.TItle: Worst of Friends Author: Suzanne Tripp Jurmain Illustrator: Larry Day Pub date: 2011 Publisher: Dutton, a division of Penguin