Synopses & Reviews
"Kimmelman's (Everybody Bonjours!) picture-book biography of Teddy Roosevelt's daughter is as much about her father's accomplishments as it is about Alice's unruly behavior. The conversational narrative emphasizes that soldier, diplomat and politician Roosevelt 'could handle almost anything,' be it governing the U.S. or international diplomacy. 'But,' reads the book's repeated refrain, 'Teddy Roosevelt didn't always know how to handle his oldest daughter, Alice,' who is shown jumping on the sofa, riding a pig and driving a speeding automobile. Speech balloons present Roosevelt's repeated admonishments of his rambunctious offspring, and the typeface is sometimes creatively arranged, as when it snakes across the page in a passage about Alice's pet snake. Gustavson (The Yankee at the Seder) adeptly captures the young woman's shenanigans and her irrepressible spirit in lifelike oil paintings that range from spot art to full-spread scenes and include some inventive perspectives. One scene shows her happily perched on a rooftop with a teacup and umbrella, and a view from above later spotlights the havoc the escaped snake creates in the White House. A lively, fictionalized portrait of a very independent girl. Ages 4 8. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Alice Roosevelt was an independent, outspoken young woman during a time when women were supposed to be conventional and reserved. Whether it was riding a pig, keeping a pet snake, or driving a carand speeding!Alice did what she wanted to. When her father told she had to obey his rules while she lived under his roof, Alice decided to spend her time on top of the roof! Readers will enjoy author Leslie Kimmelmans factual and affectionate look at a free spirit who caught the attention of a nation in the early years of the twentieth century. Kimmelman juxtaposes Alices antics with the achievements of her fatherfrom his creation of our national parks system to his successful efforts at diplomacyyet all the while, demonstrates a tender bond between the two. Adam Gustavsons illustrations perfectly capture the humor of the story and the strong personalities of its characters while placing the story within its proper historical context.