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Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  1,080 Ratings  ·  139 Reviews
The intriguing story of Eleanor Roosevelt traces the life of the former First Lady from her early childhood through the tumultuous years in the White House to her active role in the founding of the United Nations after World War II. A Newberry Honor Book.
Hardcover, 208 pages
Published August 15th 1993 by Clarion Books (first published 1993)
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(showing 1-30)
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Jen Ozburn
Aug 09, 2013 Jen Ozburn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, nonfiction
I loved this book.

Since Eleanor's life was quite complex and complicated, I would think it a challenge to present her life to young readers, yet Freedman narrates with both a look at the failures and successes of arguably the first "working" first lady. Personally I am drawn to this book since the heroine is an example of a tireless reformer and social worker. I especially love that she was instrumental in writing the International Bill of Human Rights.

Reading this book made me appreciative of
Alan Chen
Overall, this book is very readable, though it suffers from a lack of direction. There are simply too many personalities, stories and events that occur for a casual reader to keep up with without making notes. People such as Eleanor's many friends will accompany her for life and weave in and out of the story without warning. The author cannot be blamed for the fullness of his subject's life, but I wish he could have found a way to present it better. The only consistency in Eleanor's life is that ...more
Jan 12, 2009 Gabriella rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Do you consider heroes being people that save millions of lives and have super powers? Or, do you consider heroes people that brake world records or do supernatural things? One of my heroes was a first lady for 16 years, she was not amazingly beautiful but she was very brave and kindhearted... her name was Eleanor Roosevelt. Her biography caught my attention as soon as I set eyes on it and just by reading it I learned what a hero really is. Russell Freedman showed Eleanor as a hero through thre ...more
Apr 27, 2010 Linda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
i didn't know much about eleanor roosevelt before this reading. i was impressed with the fact that although she was born into great wealth, she had a dark childhood. her father, whom she idolized, was an alcoholic (my gosh, have i read a memoir or biography this year that didn't have an alcoholic father in it?)and she always felt her plain, if not ugly looks made her a disappointment to her mother, a socialite beauty. she was a shy, frightened child, and i delighted in reading how she eventually ...more
1994 Newbery Honor Book

This was a very interesting biography about the famous first wife of FDR. She has a very interesting backstory. She was a rich girl but she was raised by relatives a lot because of her mother's early death and her father's alcoholism and subsequent death. She found her voice at a fancy finishing school in Europe before returning to America and eventually marrying her 5th cousin FDR. She was more closely related to Teddy Roosevelt than FDR was (Teddy was her uncle).

She ente
Aug 11, 2012 Trinna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Inspiring book, inspiring woman. I have learned so much from reading about her life. She had so many hard things happen in her life and yet she was so selfless and thought only of others. Great book, lots of pictures. I wish they would make a great movie about her life!
Mar 22, 2017 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I picked this up after reading a kid's book report last week and reading about Eleanor Roosevelt flying in a plane flown by Amelia Earhart, both of them wearing evening gowns. The biography is readable and packed with details that make Mrs. Roosevelt come alive. I had known very little about her life, other than that she was a president's wife, and now I'm ready for the next book--there's a list of sources and other recommended biographies at the end.
Feb 13, 2017 Sharon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 star rating as it was a great introduction about an incredible woman. I came to really admire Eleanor Roosevelt - her energy, her life, and what she stood for.
Dec 12, 2016 Amber rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a fascinating woman!
Mar 01, 2017 Judy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good intro to a much-admired woman, but not really a gripping read. Nice assortment of pictures.
Before I began this book, I knew very little about Eleanor Roosevelt. I knew a lot of people picked quotes of her's for their yearbook blurbs, and she was the wife of a president, and that's about as far as it went. I'm embarrassed that I didn't learn about her before! I am constantly regretting that I didn't pay more attention and actually do more of the reading for my social studies classes growing up. Now I'm prepared to answer a Jeopardy category about Eleanor's life and humanitarian passion ...more
Cindy Benabderrahman
Apr 03, 2009 Cindy Benabderrahman rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: unconventional but ordinary girls looking for a role model or a hero
This is the story of Eleanor Roosevelt. She would have described herself as a plain, ordinary woman, but she was many things even if she was ordinary. She was a humanitarian above all else, and she was a political activist, and advocate of human rights. The story illustrates her childhood and family life with her grandmother after being orphaned, her marriage to Franklin D. Roosevelt, her 16 years as First Lady, and her Good Works as a woman role model who wore many hats in the public eye
Apr 24, 2012 Danielle rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: eced-221
This book is all about Eleanor Roosevelt's life. It goes through her life as a child to being the First lady when her husband became president. Eleanor made a lot of changes for the first lady, which is why they have more privledges today.

I'm not sure how interested young readers will be in Eleanor Roosevelt's life, but it is still a good topic that they should be introduced to. The book is large and has a lot of pages to read for children, so they may not become as interested once they see the
Jul 02, 2012 Melissa rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography
Eleanor Roosevelt stands out among contemporary First Ladies. She had a troubled childhood, losing her mother to Diphtheria when she was only 8 and then her alcoholic father died less than two years later. She and her siblings were left to her maternal grandmother who could barely manage her own dysfunctional adult children. Despite Eleanor's profound heartache and the constant reminders of her own lack of beauty, Eleanor thrived in a private finishing school in London and eventually returned to ...more
Feb 17, 2017 Pauline rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an audio book I picked up at school from a retiring teacher. I've always admired Eleanor but didn't know a lot about her. It was an interesting young adult story to listen to as I went to work. Her life was not an easy life but one it seemed she lived with grace even when she wished she didn't have to.
From a painfully shy childhood to one of the most admired and busiest women in the world, Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery follows this fascinating woman through her many phases of life.

Written for an older audience, this Newbery honored work covers Mrs. Roosevelt in a traditional biography format. Freedman includes a fair number of photos which really help the reader see the major changes in fashion and even technology that Eleanor Roosevelt lived through. It is amazing to see young Elean
Nicole White
Sep 27, 2012 Nicole White rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery by Russell Freedman

1. Genre: Biography

2. Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery is a comprehensive, thorough biography about the former first lady, Eleanor Roosevelt. This book gives details about Eleanor’s difficult childhood all the way through to her ascension to the White House.

3. a. Area for Comment: Accuracy and Completeness

b. The information presented in this book is not only accurate and factual, but it is presented in a way that draws the reader i
Amanda Delegram
Mar 28, 2012 Amanda Delegram rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: eced-221
Summary: Elanor Roosevelt was a very plain looking woman with an extraordinary personality. She spent her life helping other as much as possible and fighting for her own independence. She was very much opposed to her husband being president however she made the best out of a situation that was not so ideal to her.

Critique: Eleanor Roosevelt is a very interesting person and I believe that your readers would be interested in learning how she grew up and eventually became the first lady. The autho
Andrea Antoniewicz
Apr 11, 2016 Andrea Antoniewicz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: biography-book
This biography by Russel Freedman is very well thought out and categorized to a T. He managed to categorize every bit of Eleanor Roosevelt's life in only 185 pages. Categories like "The Education of Eleanor Roosevelt" and "The War Years". The black and white photos were helpful because they sort of gave a since of the time, and a history lesson if you will. Not only do you learn about Eleanor, but you learn about Franklin Roosevelt too, small details that might not have been in the regular histo ...more
This was mentioned in the children's literature textbook I'm using as an example of a good junior high to high school level biography. I actually found it in the regular, adult section of my library rather than the young adult section, and I really don't see that this would be condescending to an adult audience at all. It's a very good, highly well researched, and engaging biography of Eleanor Roosevelt, who I admit to not having know a great deal about prior to reading this. What a very interes ...more
Aug 27, 2013 Jill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: newbery-honor
Another great biography by Russell Freedman, the Ken Burns of the literary world.

"Franklin's encounter with polio changed him. For the first time in his life, he had suffered the agonies of pain and terror in a way that he had never imagined possible. He had discovered what it was like to be weak and helpless, to be totally dependent on others. "Franklin's illness proved a blessing in disguise," wrote Eleanor, "for it gave him strength and courage he had not had before. He had to think out the
Mary Harris
Dec 06, 2012 Mary Harris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Citation: Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery, by Russell Freedman. (Sandpiper, 1997). 208 p. Biography
Genre: Junior Book – Biography
Summary: This book is about the late president Roosevelt’s wife, Eleanor. The book chronicles her early years through her years as first lady in the White House.
A. I thought the book was very interesting. As a history major I always knew a lot about her husband, however, I never really knew much about Eleanor Roosevelt.
B. Freedman does an excellent job telling
Ashlie Covington
This book is all about Eleanor Roosevelt's life. It goes through her life as a child to being the First lady when her husband became president. Eleanor made a lot of changes for the first lady, which is why they have more privledges today.

I didnt know much prior to me reading this book but after reading it I have so much respect for this woman. She is such a romodel for young woman and has helped mold the first lady life style for future first ladies.

I dont really think children will enjoy this
Apr 23, 2012 Adam rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: eced-221
This is a biography about a woman named Elanor Roosevelt, and she was an important figure when it comes to women's rights. She dedicated her whole life to trying to get equal treatment between men and women.

In this book the author does an exceptional job as passing Elanor as an ordinary woman and not the wide to the president of the United States. The information in this story were told very well and were very accurate. This book does a great job of keeping the reader interested
The Reading Countess
An unflinchingly honest history of a life well lived, Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery had me flinching at the young and timid ER and applauding the woman she grew into later in her life. While this biography is intended for the middle grade set, I was both surprised as well as impressed at the truth of the cracked relationship Eleanor had with her husband after discovering his years-long adulterous affair with his social secretary as well as the frankness about her thirty year relationshi ...more
Awards: Newbery Honor (1994), Jane Addams Children's Book Award Nominee for Older Children (1994)
Type: Informational
Summary: This book goes along with what she has done in her life from her parents dying when she was a little girl to becoming a mother and from hearing what the voices of the people. She went to become a person with words and actions. Helping many people across the world and doing what not all first ladies tend to do.
I would not read this to class because of how long it is and how
Sep 17, 2014 Nicole rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: engl-420

Freedman did an excellent job weaving narrative in with the facts about Mrs. Roosevelt's incredible life. This book would be excellent for an child, girls especially, ages 10 and up. She is an inspiration. I particularly enjoyed his emphasis on the hardships of her early life: timid, mother calling her ugly, scared, etc. It only makes what she made of herself that much more remarkable. It did seem as though Freedman did not like President Roosevelt much as most reference to P
May 03, 2014 Apzmarshl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I knew nothing of Eleanor Roosevelt before this book, including that she married her cousin, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, so her name never changed.
Mrs. Roosevelt packed so much into one lifetime. Her youth was unhappy. She was shy, frightened, and according to her own mother, not very pleasing to the eye.
My favorite quote from her that left me feeling very connected to her story...."About the only value the story of my life may have, is to show that one can, even without any particular gifts, ov
This was a random book that I picked up last week and decided to read...
With all of the political happenings, I decided it was a good time to read about an inspirational First Lady! This book is an oldie (1993) but a goodie. I love Russell Freedman--his writing style is incredibly narrative and he is a master storyteller. This book did not disappoint! I can absolutely see why this was a Newbery Honor Book!
Freedman presents her story in an unbiased light. He shares her weaknesses and strengths;
Unit of Raine
A general timeline and biography of Eleanor Roosevelt. Followed the similar path to the other biography I'd read, with many of the same photos.

I wonder if because her autobiography, columns, letters, etc are all published that few biographies have any additional or new information. It is mentioned that both she and Franklin were very careful and cognizant of their written legacy and thus, wrote accordingly. It is also mentioned that the majority of the people involved in their salacious inciden
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Russell Freedman is the award-winning author of 47 books, some of which have been translated into a diverse number of languages, including Japanese, Korean, German, Spanish, Flemish, Arabic and Bengali. But Freedman wasn't always a children's book writer.

He grew up in San Francisco and attended the University of California, Berkeley, and then worked as a reporter and editor for the Associated Pre
More about Russell Freedman...

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