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True Stories of Great Americans for Young Americans (audio CD) Review by Dena Wood

Jim Hodges
Jim Hodges Audio Books
629 Admiral Drive
Annapolis, MD 21401
1 (405) 808-9758

Jim Hodges has taken Lamplighter Publishing's True Stories of Great Americans for Young Americans, originally written in 1898, and recorded it in MP3 format for enjoyable audio listening. Though his website lists this CD as suitable for "Boys and Girls, Early Elementary - Junior High," I have to disagree. I loved it, and I am well past junior high! My children ask to listen to this disc daily, and my 5, 7 and 10-year-olds all seem to enjoy it equally well.

Mr. Hodges reads in a pleasant and engaging manner, and the content is excellent. These stories take historical figures and bring them to life. The beauty is that your children become aware of the habits and practices of famous men and women and relate them to their own lives. These well-known "greats" no longer seem far-off and removed, but rather role models worth emulating. The stories focus on the qualities and characteristics that made these men and women famous.

While we don't hear about George Washington chopping down a cherry tree, we do learn about his honesty regarding a tragic incident involving his mother's favorite horse. We learn of the admirable qualities of Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee. Both are great men, even though they opposed one another in the Civil War. The CD is filled with tales of 22 "greats," from Thomas Edison to Dolly Madison and Louisa May Alcott. With nearly eight hours of great listening, this CD is a bargain--full of excellent lessons in both history and character.

Product review by Dena Wood, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, May 2007