POTUS and the Military | Government Series Nonfiction

Focused on the United States government and its military, this season’s series introduces young readers to several famous executives of the past and present, provide report writers with necessary information and explores modern weaponry.

The United States government and its military are featured in the following series. “American Presidents” (Bellwether/Blastoff! Readers) introduces young readers to several famous executives of the past and present and “U.S. Government Q&A!” (Gareth Stevens) will answer many youngsters’ questions. The “Atomic Bomb” (Abdo/Core Library) volumes will provide report writers with necessary information on that topic while Abdo/Kids Core’s “US Military Equipment” explores modern weaponry.



Grack, Rachel. Abraham Lincoln. ISBN 9781644875100.
––––. Bill Clinton. ISBN 9781644875124.
––––. John F. Kennedy. ISBN 9781644875179.
––––. Ronald Reagan. ISBN 9781644875186.
Monroe, Alex. Donald Trump. ISBN 9781644875131.
––––. Joe Biden. ISBN 9781644875162.
Pettiford, Rebecca. Barack Obama. ISBN 9781644875117.
––––. George W. Bush. ISBN 9781644875148.
––––. George Washington. ISBN 9781644875155.
––––. Thomas Jefferson. ISBN 9781644875193.
ea vol: 24p. (American Presidents). Bellwether/Blastoff! Readers. Aug. 2021. Tr. $26.95.
K-Gr 2 –These concise and readable volumes introduce young readers to several famous United States presidents. They provide basic information such as birthdates; years served; and, in some cases, date of death. Interesting facts such as favorite hobbies and sports are presented: Abraham Lincoln’s favorite sport was wrestling; Ronald Reagan’s favorite book was The Hunt for Red October; Barack Obama’s favorite hobby is collecting comic books; Donald Trump’s favorite movie is Citizen Kane. Significant accomplishments are highlighted: John F. Kennedy created the Peace Corps, Thomas Jefferson increased the nation’s size with the Louisiana Purchase, and George W. Bush formed the Department of Homeland Security. Most of the volumes are upbeat and positive, however the titles on Clinton and Trump reference their impeachments and subsequent acquittals. The volume on Joe Biden may be considered a little dated as his presidency is still in its early stages. The complementary illustrations are bright and colorful. VERDICT These simple introductions to U.S. presidents are well written and manage to convey basic information without patronizing their young audiences. They will do well in school and public libraries.

McDonnell, Julia. How Are Laws Made? ISBN 9781538264157.
––––. Why Does Congress Have Two Houses? ISBN 9781538264355.
Rajczak, Michael. What Are Checks and Balances? ISBN 9781538264232.
Schaefer, Ben. How Are New States Added? ISBN 9781538264195.
––––. What Are States’ Rights? ISBN 9781538264270.
Shea, Therese M. What Is the Electoral College? ISBN 9781538264317.
ea vol: 24p. (U.S. Government Q & A!). Gareth Stevens. Aug. 2021. Tr. $22.60.
Gr 2-5 –Each volume in this series on American government answers and explains the questions in the respective titles. How Are Laws Made? explains the steps taken in Congress to pass laws, the steps territories must execute to achieve statehood are outlined in How Are New States Added?, brief descriptions of the three branches of government are covered inWhat Are Checks and Balances?, in What are States’ Rights? readers learn about federalism and how the tenth amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees states’ power, and Why Does Congress Have Two Houses? provides an explanation for the “The Great Compromise” made when the Constitution was being created. All titles provide suitable, if not exciting, introductions to the various facets of the United States government. Maps, pictures, and photographs are included but they serve more to break up the text than enhance it. What Is the Electoral College? will be considered dated as it contains electoral college allocations to each state based on the 2010 census. VERDICT Report writers will find the information valuable and all volumes, excepting What Is the Electoral College? , should be considered for purchase where there is a demand.


Upper Elementary to Middle School

Hustad, Douglas. U.S. Army Equipment and Vehicles. ISBN 9781532195440.
––––. U.S. Navy Equipment and Vehicles. ISBN 9781532195471.
London, Martha. U.S. Coast Guard Equipment and Vehicles. ISBN 9781532195457.
––––. U.S. Marine Corps Equipment and Vehicles. ISBN 9781532195464.
Pagel-Hogan, Elizabeth. U.S. Special Operations Forces Equipment and Vehicles. ISBN 9781532195488.
Ringstad, Arnold. U.S. Air Force Equipment and Vehicles. ISBN 9781532195433.
ea vol: 32p. (U.S. Military Equipment and Vehicles). Abdo/Kids Core. Aug. 2021. Tr. $31.36.
Gr 3-6 –Young military enthusiasts will delight in these volumes that examine the equipment and vehicles employed by the various branches of the United States military. Readers will learn about the Air Force’s F-22 fighter Raptor and its stealth capabilities, the Army’s M1 Abrams tank with its long cannon, and the Navy’s 11 aircraft carriers. Overviews of equipment such as the panoramic night-vision goggles that the Delta Force uses and the drones that assist the Marine Corps are also included. Pictures showing service members working with their tools not only complement the text but serve to illustrate the diversity of the modern American military. The text is not overly exciting, but it does provide interesting information that will captivate the young student. VERDICT These informative titles will be appreciated by those fascinated by the military and should be considered for purchase where there is demand.


Upper Middle School to High School

Carser, A R. The U.S. Decision To Drop the Atomic Bomb. ISBN 9781532192692.
Gale, Ryan. The Manhattan Project. ISBN 9781532192685.
Huddleston, Emma. How the Bomb Changed Everything. ISBN 9781532192678.
London, Martha. Atomic Bomb Survivor Stories. ISBN 9781532192661.
ea vol: 48p. (Atomic Bomb Perspectives). Abdo/Core Library. Aug. 2021. Tr. $32.79.
Gr 5-9 –These four fact-focused titles explore the various aspects of the first two atomic bombs. The Manhattan Project details the research and development of the bombs, The U.S. Decision To Drop the Atomic Bomb explores the various views for and against the bombs’ employment, Atomic Bomb Survivor Stories describes the devastation to Hiroshima and the resulting deaths caused by radiation, and How the Bomb Changed Everything discusses subsequent events including the Cold War and nuclear protests. Given the common theme, there is much overlap of information especially regarding specific bombing details and key players. For instance, Harry S. Truman’s decision to drop the bomb is discussed in each book. Information is presented in a direct manner suited to the target audience. However, the narratives tend to read like textbooks of which the accompanying black-and-white photographs do little to enhance. Only those with an intense interest in the subject will select these books on their own. ­VERDICT These volumes lend themselves well to reports but browsers will pass; selectors should consider their need for the topic.

Young readers will appreciate the introductions to U.S. presidents of whom they hear so much. Military enthusiasts will appreciate the exploration of current military weapons systems. ­Finally, report writers will find ample information about the atomic bomb and the U.S. government in these series.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing