The American Adventure Series
"The American Adventure" is a series of historical fiction books from Barbour Publishing. The 144- page paperbacks were written for boys and girls ages 8-12, but in reality the whole family will love them. I had originally expected my 9-year-old son to read the stories by himself, but one day I found myself reading a chapter and I couldn't put the book down! Ever since then we have enjoyed reading these stories together. As soon as we're done with one, we can't wait to start on the next book. Read aloud, this series would be an excellent introduction to American History for a second or third grader before beginning a more formal history curriculum.
These books are well written, exciting adventure stories with kids as the main characters. Readers will experience the children's daily way of life and encounter historical events as seen through a child's eyes at the time. They will discover how it felt to experience the stock market crash, live through the Great Depression, send loved ones off to war, hear that Japan surrendered in World War II, and more. How thrilling it must have been to meet John Hancock himself at your family's print shop, or see your father come home from the Revolution after serving with General Washington's army. Even kids who normally aren't interested in history will like these books.
I especially like the fact that this series allows you to follow the lives of families through the generations. You really care about what happens to them while remembering what they have been through in the past. A young boy in one book likes to walk by the harbor after school. In the next book he is a ship builder's apprentice. In the book after that he has his own ship building business and a son of his own. The subsequent books focus on his son who likes to help people and who eventually becomes a doctor. Thus, these books connect what the characters do as children to their success in the future.
The American Adventure books are written from a Christian perspective and include Bible verses, prayers, hymns, and moral lessons related to each story. They emphasize the significance of God in our country's history, the importance of having godly character, the relevance of wholesome family values and traditional gender roles. The series currently includes 48 books covering our nation's major historical events from the landing of the Pilgrims through the end of World War II.
There used to be an American Adventure Book Club in which members received a colorful timeline poster, stickers, activity sheets, and two books each month for $9.98 per shipment. Unfortunately, the book club no longer exists and while originally published around 1998, the books are out of print. What a shame! They are still well worth getting if you can find them. Complete sets are rare and valuable, but used copies of individual books can be purchased at Amazon Marketplace for as low as a penny apiece with $3.99 shipping. This is the best price I've seen, unless you're lucky enough to find some at a local book sale. The full series is shown below. Click on the images to check each title's availability. Or go straight to the American Adventure page at Amazon.
P.S. If you like The American Adventure books, you will also like the Liberty's Kids DVDs!
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