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Book Review: Election! by Dan Gutman

As the US presidential election gets closer, I thought it would be interesting to read a book designed to explain the whole election process to kids. Election! A Kid's Guide to Picking Our President by Dan Gutman is a great, comprehensive resource for kids ~ but I think it's more geared toward kids in middle school and high school than younger kids like mine.

The book is set up as a series of questions and answers, and it's done in a very approachable, conversational style. Here's an example:
So is the president the boss of the United States?
Not really. The first words of the Preamble to the Constitution are "We, the people..." The people of the United States are the boss of the president, not the other way around. The president, as well as all our representatives, are selected by the people they will lead.
There are chapters about the presidency, government, campaigning, candidates, voting and elections. Gutman answers questions about who can be president, what their responsibilities are and how long they remain president. He explains the basics of our government and the Constitution. He talks about campaigns, primaries and other aspects of the road to election day. He then gets into the specifics of elections and voting.

Although I said the book would be better for older kids, I do think there are certain questions and answers that I could talk about with C, who is 8. I just don't think he'd make it through the whole thing. Overall, I think Gutman does a good job of explaining all of these details without making it too complicated. The only issue I had was when he described voting booths. He only describes one type and it's not what we have. So it wouldn't make sense to C, who went with us when we voted (early) this year.

If you're looking for a resource to teach your kids about the presidency and elections, I do recommend Election! It is full of facts and written in an easy-to read style.

For more children's books reviews, check out What My Child is Reading at Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns.

See my reviews of other Dan Gutman books:
The Genius Files
The Homework Machine

This review was written based on an ebook copy of Election! that I received from Open Road Media through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 


  1. Julie, thanks so much for linking up to The Children's Bookshelf! :) I hadn't heard of this book, but I like that it is for older kids. My 7 year old asked a lot of questions this year and this sounds like it would come in handy.


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