BOOK REVIEWS

Irving Berlin, the Immigrant Boy Who Made America Sing Reviews

UPDATE TIME: 2019-01-20 
Review Score: 5 out of 5 star From 0 user ratings
ISBN:193954744X
LANGUAGE:English

" At the start I was worried it wouldn't get to where I was expecting/hoping it would... but of course it did! Definitely need to add this to my classroom library! " said.

" This picture book biography is so beautifully written and it's such an inspirational story. It gave me goosebumps! " said.

" Great picture book/biography about a Russian Immigrant and how he become the person to write "God Bless America". " said.

" Wonderful story about Irving Berlin, who wrote the famous "God Bless America" song, as well as numerous other songs. The kids and I didn't know his story at all, but it's a fascinating one. Great book for fans of non-fiction biographies. Also interesting for music fans and people looking for books about immigrants. " said.

"Another great book from Nancy Churnin!

Nancy Churnin has a knack for writing picture books about famous people--William Hoy, Charlie Sifford, and Dashrath Manjhi, just to name a few! In her book, "Irving Berlin, the Immigrant Boy Who Made America Sing," the reader begins to understand how a refugee from Russia came to write the song "God Bless America." His inspiration stemming from the crack of stickball games, the creak of cartwheels on the cobblestones, to the thump of his mother kneading dough in their crowded apartment. It's a fascinating read!
Karen Rostoker-Gruber
" said.

"Irving Berlin, The Immigrant Boy Who Made America Sing by Nancy Churnin, illustrated by James Rey Sanchez is one of these books that should be in every library and school because it touches on Berlin's love for music but also on issues that our society faces every day, such as immigration, racism, persecution, poverty, struggle and determination. We get to know Irving not only as song writer but as an incredible person who was inspired by Ms. Liberty's promise and followed his own dream.
Young readers will be inspired by Irving's generosity and the fact that he donated all monies he received from God Bless America as a thank you for the country who welcomed him and his family.
I highly recommend this book.
" said.

"As families sit outside on blankets together to enjoy fireworks displays this summer, they are certain to hear some of Irving Berlin's music, especially "God Bless America". The days leading up to the Fourth of July would be a terrific time to share this interesting picture book biography that tells the story of young Irving Berlin, who fled Russia with his family at the end of the nineteenth century. A poor, homeless young man, Berlin worked very hard as a waiter and learned to write music. As his songs became more famous, people all across America were encouraged by his music during rough times. It might be fun to find some of his music on the internet and share it with youngsters who are probably familiar with several of the songs (even if they don't know it). There is an author's note and a timeline at the back of the book that might serve as a good starting point for further research." said.

"First sentence: Irving stood on tiptoe to see over the rail. Behind him, too far to glimpse, was Russia where angry Cossacks had burned his family's home to ashes. Ahead was America. What would they find there?

Premise/plot: Nancy Churnin has written a picture book biography of songwriter Irving Berlin. She begins his story with his family's journey to America. He was five. Life in the new country was hard--strange--but Berlin loved it. The picture book focuses on his early years: how he got started writing songs, how he got into the music business, his most popular songs. But the book specifically highlights his writing "God Bless America."

My thoughts: I enjoyed this one. I found it informative and compelling. I didn't realize how little I knew about his personal life until I read this one. I think we all tend to take certain songs for granted without really thinking about why/how they were written, without thinking about the songwriters behind them. It's a book worth reading.
" said.

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