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ChildrensPictureBook.info Review

P is for Pilgrim: A Thanksgiving Alphabet
By Carol Crane
Illustrator Helle Urban
Publisher Sleeping Bear Press

This Thanksgiving alphabet book takes us across the Atlantic Ocean with the Pilgrims to the present day and a Thanksgiving Day parade full of zippy bands zigzagging down the street. A short rhyme on each page is meant for reading to children while a longer sidebar fills in details for parents or older children. The rhymes are stilted and often require information from the sidebar to explain them. The focus of the book is on celebrating American diversity and democracy by pointing out how these ideals had foundation in the relationship between the Wampanoag, the Native Americans who helped the Pilgrims, and the Pilgrims. The book is not a steady flow from past to present, so the transitions are not there and the leap from landing at Plymouth to the Declaration of Independence spanned more than a century and a half in one four-line rhyme. Readers could also take away the notion that American ideals of sharing, helping others, respect for women, and respect for the rights of others came from the Wampanoag. Again, there is another jump from 1620 to 1791, Pilgrims to the Bill of Rights, that leaves out significant historical detail, the Enlightenment, in favor of promoting a message of how diversity has made us better. If you're interested in learning more about Thanksgiving, I'd give this book a pass in favor of better selections like The Pilgrim's First Thanksgiving by Ann McGovern.


P is for Pilgrim: A Thanksgiving Alphabet

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