Monday, January 21, 2008
"Seeing the Elephant: A Story of the Civil War"
I don't often cry when reading a picture book, but I did with this one. I like kids books that have a message, but aren't too preachy. This one fits the bill. It is told from the perspective of an 11-year-old boy who meets the "other side" while helphing his aunt in a Civil War hospital. Wow! The message is that those called the enemy are often an awful lot like us. They aren't always what is portrayed. Yes, even in the 1860's it was assummed that everyone in the South was a prosperous land and slave owner, just as today it is often assumed that every young black male is a thug. The truth is that the vast majority of people are just trying to make their way through life, taking care of their family.