|First conspiracy : the secret plot to kill George Washington|
Author: Meltzer, Brad
The secret assassination attempt on George Washington and how the plot paved the way for the creation of the CIA and the FBI more than a century later.
|Added Entry - Personal Name:||Mensch, Josh|
Kirkus Reviews (11/15/19)
School Library Journal (01/01/20)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 12/15/2019 Utter “presidential” and “conspiracy theory” and typically modern plots come to mind. But when Meltzer found a reference to a supposed plot to kill George Washington—in a footnote, no less—he knew he had to investigate and teamed up with fellow historian Mensch. In this young reader’s edition of the New York Times best-seller, the duo craft a detective story, steadily revealing who would want to assassinate George Washington, why they would gain from his demise, and most important, how they would try to pull it off. Short chapters with quick pacing, illustrations, and probing endings help set a suspenseful tone. And framing the story is background information on George Washington’s character, as well as key events and players in the early days of the Revolutionary War. Perhaps more interesting than the assassination plot itself are the descriptions of the country’s first counterintelligence committee and the creation of Washington’s spy network. Despite the shorter text, this version is still packed with sophisticated details, making it suitable for both YA and adult history collections. - Copyright 2019 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 01/01/2020 Gr 5–8—During the year between Washington's appointment as commander of the Continental Army and the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the young general matured rapidly from a stately landowner and former soldier to the revered leader of a ragtag and still unproven military force. Meltzer and Mensch, in this young reader's edition of their best-selling book, trace a shadowy plot that may have originated with New York's royal governor, William Tryon. The narrative shifts between various cities and jumps forward and backward in time. Context is provided and gaps in understanding are filled, though the overall arc of the story is maintained. The sometimes disorienting structure contributes to the portrayal of constantly shifting allegiances and intrigue: "Intelligence. Cunning. Secrecy. These are the tools of war." The text has few illustrations and no sidebars or graphic elements to break up long blocks of text, making it more suitable for stronger readers. The images included, however, support the narrative and typically include substantial captions. Chapters are mostly short, and the language is simple and clear. A lengthy bibliography, including references to many primary sources, as well as 30 pages of detailed source notes, organized by chapter and page number, conclude the volume. VERDICT This title, amply researched, well documented, and as engagingly written as a spy thriller, is highly recommended for middle grade libraries.—Bob Hassett, Luther Jackson Middle School, Falls Church, VA - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.