Editors of TIME for Kids. Our 50 United States and Other U.S. Lands. HarperCollins, 2006. ISBN 0060815574. $17.99. 70 p.
Reviewer: Kate Reynolds
Reading Level: Primary
Genre: Informational books;
Subject: U.S. states—Miscellanea—Juvenile literature; United States—Miscellanea—Juvenile literature; Books—Reviews;
California's state motto is "eureka"; seven states are visible from the top of Lookout Mountain in Tennessee on a clear day; Alaska was purchased from Russia for about two cents an acre. This book’s state pages—one for each state—include interesting facts like these, as well as a map of the state marking important cities, the order and date of its statehood, a "Did you Know?" trivia blurb, a brief history of the state, two relevant photos with explanations, an "Earth Alert!" section highlighting environmental information related to the state and a "Mystery Person" clue (with answer upside down under the clue). While many books on the 50 states are available, this book is more useful because it also includes information on territories and commonwealths of the United States (though in more brevity than the states). Facts about population, economy, and citizenship status are provided: for example, people in American Samoa are not U.S. citizens, but people in Guam are—although they can't vote in presidential elections. More thorough information is given for Puerto Rico, including the frequent debates regarding statehood. Finally, the unique situation of the District of Columbia is addressed. Includes a "50 States at a Glance" section with state flags, postal abbreviations, capitals, nicknames, populations, land areas, and state symbols. Doesn't offer much new information, but the trivia will interest young readers. The inclusion of territories and commonwealths make this a better choice than many others on the same topic.
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