Monday, July 2, 2012

Book Review: Liberty Lee's Tail of Independence

With America's Independence Day coming up here on the 4th of July, I was searching for a fun way to teach my kids a bit about why we light fireworks, listen to patriotic songs and barbeque. What a pleasant surprise when TLC Book Tours contacted me and invited me to participate in a blog tour for the children's book Liberty Lee's Tail of Independence, written and illustrated by Peter W. Barnes and Cheryl Shaw Barnes. I read a copy of this book that TLC Book Tours sent me with my 7 year old son.

Liberty Lee's Tail of Independence Peter W. Barnes and Cheryl Shaw Barnes
Published: 2012
Publisher: Regnery Publishing, Inc.
ISBN: 978-1-59698-792-0
Source: TLC Book Tours

From the Publisher: 
"On the 4th of July, Liberty Lee proudly tells how he and his friends helped the 13 American colonies win their freedom. For years the king of England had unfairly taxed them--he taxed their sugar, molasses, and teas. What would be next? Macaroni and cheese?"
"From the Boston Tea Party to the "shot heard 'round the world", at Lexington and Concord....follow Liberty Lee and his patriotic friends as they fight for the unalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness--for people and mice everywhere!"

My Review:
What a fun way to bring history to a child's level of understanding. The book introduces real history facts, like the 13 colonies, the Boston Tea Party, Battles at Lexington and Concord, and penning of the Declaration of Independence through the experiences of the fictional mouse.

Animal characters often appeal to children; using a mouse for the narrator was a great idea to reach the younger reader (or listener, as the case is at my house!). My 7 year old son really liked looking for the eagle hidden on each page, too.

I believe this book would be an engaging read for a child as young as 4 and up to about age 10 or so.

Liberty Lee is filled with charming illustrations. My favorite page was the illustration which combined a scene of farmland and people engaged in everyday tasks. This scene was right next to a map illustration of the 13 colonies, in bright colors delineating them each along the Atlantic. It was helpful in order to give the reader an idea of where the colonies were located. The details of the farmland scenes draw the reader in to examine the page and what each tiny vignette is depicting: men picking apples in an orchard, children feeding chickens, women at work in gardens, bees buzzing around a beehive. Perfect for little eyes to look at and minds to stay engaged as they listen to the words read aloud.

I was really impressed by the pages that have short descriptions of each of the first 19 battles of the Revolutionary War, including whether they were American or British victories. The authors really fit a lot of useful information into a short format!
The rhyming text gives the story interest to read-aloud, both to say and to hear.

My favorite lines are these:

"Now many years later, our hearts full of pride,
With our fellow Americans here at our side,
The twilight is gleaming with red, white and blue,
Giving proof through the night that our dream has come true!

For out in the distance--oh, say, can you see?--
It's America's future--it's great destiny!
We leave it to you, with your hearts pure and strong,
For we have faith in you--and we have all along!"

For more reviews about this book, you can visit TLC Book Tours online.

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for writing this post and all opinions here are my own. 
I was given a copy of this book in order to read and then write a review.


  1. So nice to meet you! Thanks for stopping by my blog. I'm always glad to meet a kindred spirit. I'll be reading more of your writing too!


  2. Thank you for visiting, Lanaya! I sub'd to your blog to read more. You've got some great ideas, there. I hope you will come back and read what interests you here, too.


  3. I love that the book includes the basics of those first battles - kids really can learn (and retain!) tons of facts at a young age so books that teach while being fun to read are favorites for me.

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

    1. It was my pleasure, Heather. Thanks for visiting here and commenting!


Thanks for your comment today! I love reading your thoughts, too. :-)