Four Streets and a Square: A History of Manhattan and the New York Idea

Candlewick. Dec. 2021. 440p. Tr $29.99. ISBN 9780763651374.
Gr 7 Up–A well-organized and impeccably researched nonfiction book about the history of New York City from the 1600s to present. From Alexander Hamilton to 42nd Street, from the Lenape to the immigrant communities that made the city what it is, famous people, places, and events abound in this encapsulation of the city. More than just a geographical location, this is an exploration of the culture, people, and events that make New York City a fascinating and iconic place. Aronson’s text is interspersed with photos, illustrations, and multimedia links to his website that give readers an immersive and thorough experience. The author includes a bibliography, a description on how the book is organized, a section on the terminology that is used, why he used specific terms, and detailed source notes that are helpfully limned by chapter. While the book may be lengthy for some middle school students, it will keep readers’ attention with its cohesiveness and strong voice. A great choice for research or for those who can’t get enough of the Big Apple.
VERDICT A must-have for middle and high school libraries.

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