Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Review: The Boy Who Changed the World

The Boy Who Changed the WorldTitle: The Boy Who Changed the World
Author: Andy Andrews
Genre: Children's nonfiction/social issues/values & virtues
Publisher: Tommy Nelson
Physical Description: 40-page Jacketed hardcover
List Price: $16.99
ISBN: 978-1-4003-1605-2
For More Info:  www.AndyAndrews.com 

Did you know that what you do today can change the world forever?
The Boy Who Changed the World opens with a young Norman Borlaug playing in his family’s cornfields with his sisters. One day, Norman would grow up and use his knowledge of agriculture to save the lives of two billion people. Two billion! Norman changed the world!  Or was it Henry Wallace who changed the world?  Or maybe it was George Washington Carver?
This engaging story reveals the incredible truth that everything we do matters! Based on The Butterfly Effect, Andy’s timeless tale shows children that even the smallest of our actions can affect all of humanity. The book is beautifully illustrated and shares the stories of Nobel Laureate Norman Borlaug, Vice President Henry Wallace, Inventor George Washington Carver, and Farmer Moses Carver. Through the stories of each, a different butterfly will appear. The book will end with a flourish of butterflies and a charge to the child that they, too, can be the boy or girl who changes the world.
About the Author:
Andy Andrews, hailed by a New York Times writer as someone who has quietly become "one of the most influential people in America,” is a best-selling novelist and in-demand corporate speaker for the world’s largest organizations. The Traveler’s Gift, a featured book selection of ABC’s Good Morning America, has been translated into nearly twenty languages and was on the New York Times bestseller list for seventeen weeks.
Andy has spoken at the request of four different United States presidents and toured military bases around the world, being called upon by the Department of Defense to speak to the troops. Arguably, there is no single person on the planet better at weaving subtle yet life-changing lessons into riveting tales of adventure and intrigue—both on paper and on stage.
What Mom Liked:  I've loved Andy Andrews' practical motivational style ever since I read The Noticer.  I love the fact that it's now made relevant for kids!

In this book, Andrews uses real-life examples to bring home his point that every little thing we do matters, and that even kids can change the world.  There are fun tidbits to attract kids, like playing in fields of corn, imaginary hippos in Iowa streams, and pet roosters.  I love the history lessons, and I very much love the main message.

The illustrations are fabulous!  They are gender-neutral, but the butterflies scattered throughout make them VERY appealing to my little princess.  A great example of how true-to-life illustrations can still be bright and colorful enough to attract the little ones.

Did she get the message?  Perhaps not yet at 3 years old.  The use of multiple stories - all connected - lost her somewhere along the way.  I asked her at the end how she could change the world, and she came up with the idea of swapping the moon out with the sun, and then holding out her finger so butterflies could land on it.  Not quite what I was looking for!  But we'll get there...

What Mom Didn't Like:  Nothing!

I did find the examples used rather interesting.  If you're anti-GMO, you might even be shocked!  Perhaps Andrews could have come up with some less politically/emotionally-charged heroes.  However, I've lived in third-world countries myself and even written a post or two about my irritation with Americans' hype over the type of plastics used for water when the big worry should be over just getting water to those dying of thirst, etc.  So I kind of appreciated Andrews' examples!  (I like Norman Borlaug's quote about his critics:  "If they lived just one month amid the misery of the developing world, as I have for fifty years, they'd be crying out for tractors and fertilizer and irrigation canals and be outraged that fashionable elitists back home were trying to deny them these things.")

Thanks to Thomas Nelson and the BookSneeze program for the review copy of this book.

You might be interested in my giveaway at Winning Readings for Andy Andrews' adult gift book on the same topic, The Butterfly Effect.  Leave an extra comment that you're coming from Mozi Esmé, and you'll get an extra entry...


Jen said...

I posted a review on this book today, too! I loved it and so did my kids!