Most Wanted: The Revolutionary Partnership of John Hancock & Samuel Adams

Disney-Hyperion. Mar. 2020. 80p. Tr $19.99. ISBN 9781368026833.
Gr 3-5–John Hancock and Samuel Adams were a dubious duo that helped set in motion the events that led to the American Revolution. The two men were opposites in many ways but became united in their fight against British tyranny. Marsh covers the pair’s incendiary tactics over the span of 10 years, beginning with their response to Britain’s oppressive stamp tax and ending with their escape to the Continental Congress, flanked by militiamen and marching bands. The ample back matter includes an author’s note, a time line, a bibliography, and source notes (for chosen quotations only). Fotheringham’s wonderful illustrations are elegantly sketched cartoons that play with size. One would hardly even need to read the text to understand what is going on, as pivotal moments in the patriots’ lives are showcased clearly. In one scene, Hancock speaks of how he won’t “be a slave.” Fotheringham depicts the hypocrisy of this statement in an illustration that depicts a slave’s derision while serving Hancock. Marsh’s account of events is historically accurate, but this book may not be appropriate for school reports due to its picture book format and sources for quotes only. While this book shines a light on the partnership of Adams and Hancock, it’s a hard sell to patrons who are looking for either a story or more substantial content.
VERDICT A secondary purchase. Only for readers looking to know more about the partnership of Hancock and Adams.

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