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Welcome!! My name is Paul Lappen. I am in my early 50s, single, and live in Connecticut USA. This blog will consist of book reviews, written by me, on a wide variety of subjects. I specialize, as much as possible, in small press and self-published books, to give them whatever tiny bit of publicity help that I can. Other than that, I am willing to review nearly any genre, except poetry, romance, elementary-school children's books and (really bloody) horror.

I have another 800 reviews at my archive blog: http://www.deadtreesreviewarchive.blogspot.com (please visit).

I post my reviews to:

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I am always looking for more places to post my reviews.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Ben Franklin for Beginners

Ben Franklin for Beginners, Tim E. Ogline, For Beginners LLC, 2013

This book looks at the life of Benjamin Franklin. He was a lot more than "just" one of America's Founding Fathers.

A native of Boston, Franklin's father wanted him to become a minister. Realizing that Ben was not cut out for the religious life, he took Ben on a tour of the local trades. Ben ended up as an indentured servant to James, his older brother, a printer. It was not a happy relationship. Ben left Boston and found himself in Philadelphia.

Over time, he became a successful printer, gaining contracts through word-of-mouth advertising. He used a variety of pseudonyms to write articles, poems and letters to the editor for a number of different newspapers, including his own. James, his older brother, was not happy on learning that a series of very popular letters signed "Silence Dogood" that he printed, actually came from Ben, his younger brother. Ben was also a well-known hoaxster and humorist.

Franklin was interested in many things besides printing. He invented swim fins (at age 11!). He invented the Franklin Stove, a new kind of fireplace. People were reluctant to accept his invention of the lightning rod, fearing that re-directing lightning bolts was defying the will of God. Ben felt that six of the alphabet's 26 letters were redundant, and could be removed, replaced with new letters. He was also known for his famous "air baths." Ben founded the first lending library, the first volunteer fire department and helped raise money for America's first hospital.

Franklin made several trips to Europe, spending more than 25 years overseas. His duties ranged from agent for several different American colonies, to later being American Ambassador to France.

This is an excellent introduction to the life of Benjamin Franklin. It is very much worth reading for everyone, including teens, and those who know him only as one of America's Founding Fathers.

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