Here in our own small world, we have been immersed in the Revolutionary War era for several weeks now. This fabulous picture book written by Pamela Duncan Edwards and illustrated by Henry Cole really ties it all together in a way that was perfect for both my 1st and 5th graders. The story is actually told in imitation of the nursery rhyme "This is the house that Jack built," which sounds really silly, but it was incredibly effective. The narrative opens with "These are the leaves that grew on a bush in a far off land and became part of the Boston Tea Party" and builds from there, to ultimately lead to "These are Americans, independent and free..." In between the story of the prelude to the Revolutionary War is told. At the bottom of each page, a chorus of mice spout off more details about this time period. Sounds weird, I know, but those are smart little mice. And the illustrations are absolutely gorgeous. This is a book that needs to start being on all of the lists of "recommended reading for the Revolutionary War."