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Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery

by Russell Freedman

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6811130,055 (4.11)6
A photobiography of the first wife of a president to have a public life and career of her own.

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This Newbery Honor book takes the reader on a journey of the life of the incredible woman by the name of
Eleanor Roosevelt. Filled with photos of her life and the history of the United States, this is an inspiring book focusing on a wealthy child who had a terrible childhood. Her parents were prestigious, and both were exceedingly beautiful/handsome. When their little daughter is born, from the beginning she was deemed ugly by her mother.

Called "granny" as she stood outside of the library where her mother was inside reading to her brothers, Eleanor believed she was not worthy of attention, and she was indeed ugly and too serious.

Her alcoholic father loved her and provided a sense of a better self concept, but alas, his love of alcohol was stronger than his love of Eleanor.

It wasn't until she attended, Allenwood, a elite school outside of London, that she truly came to fruition and gained a sense of stability. The head of the school, Mademoisell Souvestre, was instrumental in mentoring Eleanor who soon became a leader of other students.

When she married her fifth cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt, she felt she found stability and love. Sadly, she discovered love letters written to her husband by Lucy Mercer, her social secretary, and her illusion of a solid marriage fell apart. She never forgave him. Telling Roosevelt a divorce was what was needed, his mother Sara, told him if this occurred, all future sources of money would end.

While emotionally distant, she went on to support her husband as he developed a life in politics and eventually became the only United States president who was a three-term leader.

Throughout the depression, World War II, the debilitating dust storm, long lines of many who sought food and jobs, four sons who were in various branches of service, a failed bank system, and a nation that had a long way to go in their treatment of people of color, Eleanor encouraged her husband to enact liberal legislation for welfare benefits and government jobs to build park systems and needed infrastructure. She was her husband's eyes and ears and reported back to him what she saw when she traveled throughout the nation and the world.

When he developed polio and was no longer able to walk, she stood by him and helped him learn what was needed to make America the strong nation it became.

Eleanor was indeed a uniquely intelligent, caring, kind woman who never stopped helping the nation after her husband's death. A strong advocate for the United Nations, before she died she made sure this occurred. ( )
  Whisper1 | Feb 6, 2022 |
The timid and lonely child of unhappy parents, her accomplishments exceeded expectations.
  BLTSbraille | Oct 31, 2021 |
I loved this book because it was fun to read and it taught me a lot about American history. Eleanor Roosevelt was an extraordinary woman, but at the same time she was down to earth and very human. She's appealing because you can relate to her and many of her personal challenges, and also look up to her at the same time. ( )
  Janellreads | Oct 18, 2017 |
Detailing the life of Eleanor Roosevelt through words and pictures this biography takes the reader on a journey from her birth to her last days. The book highlights the accomplishments and contributions of the First Lady as she often acted as the "eyes and ears" of the President. Even after FDR's death, she continued to play an important role in world affairs and served on the United Nation and helped shape humanitarian, educational and cultural values of the organization. The book also has a great wealth of pictures to support the words within the text. ( )
  trippd | Jul 29, 2016 |
The life of Eleanor Roosevelt.
  Robinjhud | Jul 24, 2015 |
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A photobiography of the first wife of a president to have a public life and career of her own.

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