cover image The Many Lives of Benjamin Franklin

The Many Lives of Benjamin Franklin

Mary Pope Osborne. Dial Books, $13.89 (127pp) ISBN 978-0-8037-0680-4

This thoroughly researched and comprehensive biography, though interesting in a fact-finding sense, falls short in presenting a well-rounded portrayal of the man himself. Not enough facets of Franklin's life and works are developed in sufficient detail to allow children to conjure up an image of a lifestyle so different from their own experience. The writing style is for the most part straightforward, and Osborne's ( Best Wishes, Joe Brady ; Last One Home ) evident enthusiasm for her subject should engage those readers with a taste for historical biographies. Photographs and document reproductions help to enliven a somewhat somber presentation. Ages 9-12. (May)