Patrick Henry: Liberty or Death
Illustrated by Peter McDonnell
Non-Fiction biography (Series)
Ages 8 to 10
Capstone Press, 2005, 0-7368-4970-X
Patrick Henry did not have an auspicious beginning to his career. He had not been studious as a boy and several of the jobs that he tried did not work out as he had hoped. Then, with his wife’s support and encouragement he decided to make use of one skill that he most defiantly did have, which was being able to speak well and persuade people to change their minds. Thus it was that Patrick Henry became a lawyer. Indeed he did very well in this profession and had plenty of clients. It was because of his oratory skills and his strong convictions that Patrick was elected to Virginia’s House of Burgesses. This was just the beginning of what would be an exceptional political career.
From the very beginning Patrick Henry was convinced that Britain was not dealing with the American colonies fairly. He could not abide the taxes that were imposed on the Americans and when Britain sent gunships to American to impose the will of the English king, Patrick gave a speech in front of his fellow Virginians in which he said “…there is no peace. The war has actually begun… I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” Clearly he felt that there was no going back and that it was time for the Americans to fight for their freedom.
This well-written biography is presented in a graphic novel form which makes it very accessible to young readers who are not attracted to more traditional biographies. The author is still able however to pack in a great deal of information and to give the reader a very clear picture of what it must have been like to live in Virginia during the revolutionary war years.
This is one of the titles in the excellent “Graphic Library” series.
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