January 20, 2018

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Grace for President by Kelly DiPucchio | SLJ Audio Review

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redstarDIPUCCHIO, Kelly. Grace for President. 1 CD w tr book. 25 min. Weston Woods. Oct. 2016. $29.95. ISBN 9781338090239.

au-graceforpresidentPreS-Gr 3 –The 2016 presidential race—featuring the first woman nominated by a major U.S. political party—gives Kelly DiPucchio’s picture book, originally published in 2008, even greater relevance. Grace is an elementary school student who is appalled to learn that there has never been a female American president. Her interest in becoming the first leads to a school election with Grace running against Thomas, a popular boy from another class. Through their campaigns and the subsequent election, listeners learn about the American electoral system as well as the dedication and courage it takes to run for and win office. Anika Noni Rose is a fantastic and engaging narrator, and the production behind her only accentuates her reading. Scotty Huff’s keyboard sound track subtly gives Rose’s energetic reading an added emotional boost. Band music, along with cheering and booing sound effects, adds both feelings of nail-biting suspense and triumph as the election results are revealed. DiPucchio even makes an appearance on track 3, reading (although not verbatim) the afterword about the Electoral College. VERDICT Grace is an all-around winner appropriate for all school and public library collections.–Jennifer Verbrugge, Minnesota Department of Education, Roseville, MN

This review was published in the School Library Journal December 2016 issue.