Blog Tour & Review: What Would the Founding Fathers Think? by David Bowman

Goodreads summary:
History, politics, government they're not just for grown-ups anymore. Today's teens are about to be handed a collapsing nation and it'll be their job to fix it. Enter David Bowman. With wit, humor, and sound judgment, he skillfully illustrates America's biggest problems and presents an interactive guide to understanding them that's so much fun adults will want to read it too.

What I thought:
My children and I just finished studying about Ancient Rome last month, so I thought it was quite a coincidence that I received a message from David Bowman asking if I'd like to review his book since it was on my tbr list. What does Ancient Rome have to do with this? Well, if you don't know or remember anything about Ancient Rome (it had been a long time for me and I didn't remember much before we studied it again) it influenced our country's formation quite a bit. You see, those in Ancient Rome also built up this great government (at least they thought) that they called a republic. There is a famous historical figure, named Cicero, who even wrote about how things were going and the different types of government and titled it The Republic (you can read my brief review on Goodreads). He wasn't very happy because Julius Caesar had become immensely powerful and it looked like his beloved government was going to turn into a dictatorship.

Our country's founding fathers studied Cicero's writings, along with many others. You can tell that they agreed with a lot of what Cicero said because parts of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and our basic form of government is directly based upon Cicero's studies as well as the founding fathers' own experiences.

The thing is, our country is based upon some core values and beliefs. It was formed with the purpose to establish and maintain freedom and balanced power between leaders and the people (the people were to have most of the power). It was also formed to promote opportunities or capitalism, you could say. I should mention that my B.A. is in Political Science, or PoliSci as we call it, and so most of this information and the structure of our government aren't ideas or concepts that are new to me.

What Would the Founding Fathers Think? is gaged to a pre-teen and teen audience. There are these great cartoon caricatures and graphics (it helps that Bowman is an illustrator in his own right). Bowman uses conversations involving questions and answers that cover the foundation of our government and why it was organized as it was. There is also quite a bit of corny humor, but it is all in good fun and to keep readers engaged. There is a discussion on values (not religious specific) and responsibility and how these allow us our freedom, which I would have to agree is definitely needed and important in the society we live in today. The more a people cannot govern themselves (make good choices and be responsible) the more laws are made and the more powerful government becomes. There is also a discussion about removing God from the Pledge, coins, buildings, etc. He obviously is against this and explains why. Towards the end there is a discussion about entitlement, socialism versus capitalism, and then a challenge to readers to get involved.

One of the negative reviews I saw regarding the book brought up a point that I thought might be good to discuss. Bowman is a conservative and a Christian and that comes across in his writing. I am as well, so I'm sure that comes across in my opinions, but I love liberals too and my husband is from a different political party than I am (we have some great discussions and I think that is a very good thing). However, Bowman is actually very factual in his writing and has several direct quotes from the founding fathers and other historical figures. I'm sure there are many that might disagree with what they thought or believed and that's perfectly fine. However, that isn't the point. The point is that among all religions and even people there are certain values or beliefs, and this country was created to uphold and protect those, particularly religious freedom (that was one of the main reasons our country broke off from England). However, this was with the understanding that the people would live in such a way that they could govern themselves with a limited government. From what the founding fathers studied and knew they figured this was the only way that this country would work, would be balanced, and the people could be free. You don't have to belong to a specific religion or believe in a god to have values, but you do have to live some basic values in order for freedom to work. For many those values are taught in concordance with religion or religion encourages those values. I suppose I might be biased a little since I believe that most old-fashioned values never go out of style. ;) Let me just add the values Bowman lists in his book: be responsible, be a hard worker, be generous, and be honest. Sounds good to me.

This is probably the easiest book I have read on the subject. It is only 119 pages, so not overwhelming for the age group and something they can read rather quickly. It was a good way to learn some of the basics of the foundation of our country. It encourages readers to learn more, to become more aware and responsible, and to get involved. It made me think a little bit more about our government and I think that is a good thing. It is true that the following generation will run the country in the not so distant future. I would definitely recommend them reading this and also parents who may need to brush up on some of the basics as well.

Content: Clean
Genre: Juvenile Non-Fiction
Publication date: May 8, 2012 by Cedar Fort, Inc.
Source: Received free copy from author in exchange for my honest review.

This is a type of book I don't normally review on here, so I debated back and forth on excepting a copy for review. I'm glad I did because I really enjoyed reading it and I do feel like it's something we need to teach our children and discuss with them. I will definitely be sharing it with my kids and the teens I know. We don't all have to agree. How boring would that be? We should, however, know this stuff and be involved. Okay, I'm off my soapbox now. :) What do you think?

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About the author:
As a Christian and as a patriot, David Bowman glorifies his Savior and his nation through his fine art, his books, and his motivational speaking.

David also writes and illustrates a variety of books for young audiences. Combining his cartooning skills and his experience teaching at a high school level, David knows how to engage kids, pre-teens, and teens with books that are both entertaining and enlightening. His best-selling Who's Your Hero series helps kids want to become modern day examples of heroes from the scriptures. The Great Plan of Happiness teaches them of God's plan for their lives and Dude, Don't be a Lemuel helps older kids and teens avoid negative, faith-destroying attitudes.

In the political realm, David's latest work is quickly becoming THE Constitutional/conservative book
for young Americans. In What Would the Founding Fathers Think? A YOUNG American's Guide to
Understanding What Makes Our Nation Great & How we've Strayed, David uses wit, humor, and a
variety of visuals to skillfully teach preteens and teens alike the wisdom of returning to our nation's
founding principles, and in a way that they will actually "get it". Even adults will enjoy the simplicity
of its explanations. As Barbara Stowell, Vice President of Constitution Week USA, puts it: "I've learned more from this book than all the other government and constitutional course material I've studied."

And David loves to teach! He speaks to youth groups on religious and political topics all over the
country. His fun, engaging style, on a variety of topics, helps motivate them to be all-around better
Christians and patriots. Your kids won't soon forget a David Bowman presentation!

David Bowman and his wife, Natalie, live in the mountains of Arizona with their four children.

Disclosure: This review is of a book I was given for free by the author. This in no way influences the opinions shared in my review. You may see my complete policy on the sidebar and on my policies page. This post also contains link(s) to an affiliate program. If you make a purchase of any type using this/these link(s) I receive a small kickback.

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