Title: Lee, A life of Virtue, by John Perry
Many books written about Robert E. Lee are on bookshelves across America. Lee, A Life of Virtue, by John Perry, is geared toward a young audience. Teachers would do justice to middle school students by assigning John Perry’s book as part of the curriculum when studying the Civil War. Parents who enrich their children’s school work at home may consider purchasing this book.
Perry described Lee, a major general, with role model potential: a diligent, honest student. Readers will understand Lee’s attributes: leadership qualities, determination to get the job done, and responsibility for his actions.
People respected and admired Lee, without fearing him. He brought the best out of his soldiers by being humble, even sharing their deplorable living conditions during the Civil War.
In his book, Perry balances Lee’s virtues by including his flaws: he was too trusting and not forceful enough. This may have cost him defeat in certain battles. Perry describes the battles Lee won and lost, stating probable reasons why. He points out, ‘Lee never pointed a finger, never blamed anyone but himself.’
Lee, A Life of Virtue, is an easy, quick read for students and adults. I recommend the book to be on school and home bookshelves across America.
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Book review by Mary Crocco