Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?

Book review by
Tanya Smith, Common Sense Media
Where Was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May? Book Poster Image
Fast-paced account of major American statesmen.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Positive Messages
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Henry's childhood and career are described in simple sentences, using a clever plot device (the date in the title). The black-and-white and color illustrations are very simple.

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What's the story?

Give me liberty, or give me death! Patrick Henry was a consummate communicator who knew how to stir a crowd by "sending" his voice. This fast-paced account of one of America's most influential statesmen retraces Henry's happy Virginia childhood and his career in American politics. A quick read, with lots of illustrations, both color and black and white.


Is it any good?

Youngsters will enjoy this quirky book's early passages, with ample description of kid's stuff: swimming holes, walks in the woods, fishing. The second half outlines Henry's adult life, which parallels one of the most significant eras in American history. The background information in the author's note could have been easily absorbed into the text; doing so would have made some passages more interesting. While the drawings are simple, the most interesting illustrations show off Henry's many personalities: the lazy youth reclining on a sack of salt; the inspired, wildly gesturing orator.

May 29, Patrick Henry's birthday, was occasionally an eventful date in his life of Patrick Henry -- he was elected Virginia's governor.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about Henry's life. Do you see any signs in his youth that he would become such an important figure? What in his young life prepared him for his future accomplishments?

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