This is certainly a timely book to be released during the election year. And given the high amount of interest in the candidates, with their behavior garnering so much attention, what a great way to use it to advantage and not only get young readers interested in politics, but explain to them, on their level, how it works - and why it's in place to start with.
Votes of Confidence
A Young Person’s Guide to American Elections
by Jeff Fleischer
The United States election process is anything but simple. It’s made up of things like super-delegates, caucuses, and the Electoral College, so understanding this system sometimes seems like an insurmountable (and uninteresting) task—particularly for young people. Thankfully, just in time for what is already an extremely dynamic presidential election, author Jeff Fleischer has boldly taken up the challenge of political education in VOTES OF CONFIDENCE. Packed with accessible information as well as entertaining anecdotes, this book will be invaluable to people learning about the voting process for the first time, and it might have something to offer to those of us who could use a refresher course as well.
Fleischer starts at the very beginning, with the Articles of Confederation and the ensuing compromises that created the political landscape that was the foundation for the system we use today. He then wades into the messy business of elections, explaining the process, the precedents, and the tactics that past politicians have used to game the system. And rather than just listing facts and dates, Fleischer includes an abundance of sidebars and stories to bring this history to life. The book also contains concrete ideas, suggestions, and motivations for getting involved in the political process (even if you’re not old enough to vote). At a time when we’re constantly bombarded by political rhetoric, VOTES OF CONFIDENCE steers clear of hedges and dodges, instead using wit and good humor to offer a clear-eyed account of where we are, how we got here, and how this whole thing works. It also serves as a good reminder that voting is a hard-won right, and even today is not always a guarantee, so we should take advantage of the privilege and let our voices be heard.
Every four years, coverage of the presidential election turns more into a horse-race story about who’s leading the polls and who said what when. Younger readers, who might be old enough to remember only one or two other elections, aren’t provided with much information about how the election process actually works, why it matters, or how they can become involved. With civics education becoming less common in schools, it’s important for teens to know what’s going on. With the 2016 election promising to be an interesting and hotly contested one, Votes of Confidence will be a timely resource that can generate news coverage, while written in an evergreen way that can remain relevant after the next president is chosen. Using a fun, casual voice and interesting sidebars and anecdotes that tell stories rather than just list facts, this book will provide teachers with a supplemental resource and readers with an engaging way to better understand their government.
- Ages: 14+
- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Zest Books; Original edition (May, 2016)