Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review, nor was I compensated in any other way. 

We love reviewing for YWAM Publishing, and have been blessed with several of their books and study guides over the years. For this review we were blessed with John Adams Independence Forever from their Heroes of History series. There is also an accompanying study guide that goes with this! They also have their awesome Christian Heroes: Then & Now series if you'd like to check that out!

About the Book

Pages: 224
Intended ages: 10+
Author: Janet and Geoff Benge
Published: February 27, 2003

 From the back:

John's heart sank. A British man-of-war was plowing through the frigid waters of the Atlantic Ocean in hot pursuit of his ship. If the British caught up with the Boston, John would be hanged. He had proudly signed the Declaration of Independence and was carrying the colonies' secret papers. He couldn't be captured now!
Growing up in Massachusetts, longing to be a farmer like his father, John Adams never imagined the vital role he would one day play in the transformation of the colonies into an independent American nation. As the injustices of British rule stirred up the colonies to revolution and independence, this rising young lawyer became an influential member of the Continental Congress and a passionate advocate for freedom.

As a foreign diplomat for the young United States, first vice president, and second president, this true American patriot held firmly to his integrity and left an uncompromising legacy: Independence forever! (1735-1826).

Our Thoughts: 

We (Mr. B and I) both really enjoyed this book. It was easy enough for him to read on his own, and he did so in the span of just a couple of days. Mr. B has never been the type to sit all day with a work of fiction in his hands and read, so I really think he could have read it in a day had he wanted to do so. The reading level is on par with the intended age range, but this also makes a suitable read-aloud for the younger crowd.

We chose this selection because Mr. B has always had a fascination with early American and Colonial history. Given our familial connection to the era with Thomas Jefferson, Mr. B really enjoys learning all he can about this time period. We had a great time, learning lots of things about John Adams that neither of us had known before. Perhaps I should have known the pivotal role he played in colonial history, and why he was thought to be worthy as our second president, but I did not!

One thing that truly hit me was the cultural difference in the Family Unit. For instance, the assistant of John Adams wrote him to let him know that a few days prior Mrs. Adams had delivered a stillborn daughter. It was the assistant who informed Adams that the little girl was pretty. Another instance, John Adams was appointed to France. He was going to go home and softly tell Mrs. Adams so the blow wouldn't be as harsh. When he arrived, he was met with his wife very upset. It says he feared one of the children had died in his absence. The very idea that something like that was common place just made my heart hurt! So I did a bit of research, and found that the child mortality in New England was 35-40% in the 1600s, and not a lot better after that. Even in 1900, the child mortality rate was 165 for every 1000 children! That's so sad! 

The study guide is a great addition. In it you will find all sorts of activities to farther your learning. From reading comprehension to collections and more kinesthetic learning, the YWAM study guides are really great tools that we have used several times over the years! I highly recommend getting the study guide to go along with your choice of YWAM book as the two work beautifully together for a fantastic overall learning experience! 

Overall, we love John Adams-Independence Forever from the Heroes of History series. This has been one of our favorite selections from all we have received over the years, ranking up there with  George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. We highly recommend this to others!

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32 Heroes of History {YWAM Publishing Reviews}