Freedman, Russell 1929–
Freedman, Russell 1929–
Freedman, Russell 1929–
(Russell Bruce Freedman)
PERSONAL: Born October 11, 1929, in San Francisco, CA; son of Louis N. (a publisher's representative) and Irene (an actress) Freedman. Education: Attended San Jose State College (now University), 1947–49; University of California, Berkeley, B.A., 1951. Hobbies and other interests: Travel, photography, filmmaking.
CAREER: Writer, editor, publicist, and educator. Associated Press, San Francisco, CA, reporter and editor, 1953–56; J. Walter Thompson Co. (advertising agency), New York City, publicity writer for television, 1956–60; Columbia University Press, New York City, associate staff member of Columbia Encyclopedia, 1961–63; freelance writer, 1961–; editor, Crowell-Collier Educational Corp., 1964–65; New School for Social Research (now New School University), New York City, writing workshop instructor, 1969–86. Military service: U.S. Army, Counter Intelligence Corps, 1951–53; served in Korea.
MEMBER: Authors Guild, PEN, Society of Children's Book Writers.
AWARDS, HONORS: Western Heritage Award, National Cowboy Hall of Fame, 1984, for Children of the Wild West; Spur Award Honor Book citation, Western Writers of America, 1985, and Jefferson Cup Award, 1986, both for Cowboys of the Wild West; Golden Kite Award Honor Book citation, Society of Children's Book Writers, 1987, Newbery Medal, American Library Association, and Jefferson Cup Award, both 1988, all for Lincoln: A Photobiography; Jefferson Cup Award Honor Book citation, 1988, for Indian Chiefs; Golden Kite Award Honor Book citation, 1988, for Buffalo Hunt; Golden Kite Award Honor Book citation, 1990, Orbis Pictus Award, National Council of Teachers of English, and Jefferson Cup Award, both 1991, all for Franklin Delano Roosevelt; Golden Kite Award, 1991, Jefferson Cup Award, and Newbery Honor Book citation, both 1992, all for The Wright Brothers: How They Invented the Airplane; Washington Post/Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award, 1992, for distinguished work in the field of nonfiction for children; Golden Kite Award Honor Book citation, 1992, for An Indian Winter; Golden Kite Award, 1993, Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, 1994, and Newbery Honor Book citation, 1994, all for Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery; Golden Kite Award, 1994, for Kids at Work: Lewis Hine and the Crusade against Child Labor; Spur Award, Western Writers of America, 1996, for The Life and Death of Crazy Horse; Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal, American Library Association, 1998, for body of work; Golden Kite Award, 1998, for Martha Graham: A Dancer's Life; Spur Award for best Western juvenile nonfiction, Western Writers of America, 2002, for In the Days of the Vaqueros; Golden Kite Award, Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, Sibert Aard, Newbery Honor Book citation, all 2005, for Children of the Great Depression; Orbis Pictus award, 2006, for Children of the Great Depression. Freedman's books have appeared on numerous "best" or "outstanding" book lists, including lists compiled by such organizations as the American Library Association, the Junior Literary Guild, the Child Study Association of America, and the Children's Book Council, and such periodicals as School Library Journal, Horn Book, and Booklist.
NONFICTION; FOR YOUNG ADULTS
Teenagers Who Made History, portraits by Arthur Shilstone, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1961.
Two Thousand Years of Space Travel, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1963.
Jules Verne: Portrait of a Prophet, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1965.
Thomas Alva Edison, American R.D.M. (New York, NY), 1966.
Scouting with Baden-Powell, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1967.
(With James E. Morriss) How Animals Learn, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1969.
(With James E. Morriss) Animal Instincts, illustrated by John Morris, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1970.
Animal Architects, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1971.
(With James E. Morriss) The Brains of Animals and Man, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1972.
The First Days of Life, illustrated by Joseph Cellini, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1974.
Growing up Wild: How Young Animals Survive, illustrated by Leslie Morrill, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1975.
Animal Fathers, illustrated by Joseph Cellini, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1976.
Animal Games, illustrated by St. Tamara, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1976.
Hanging On: How Animals Carry Their Young, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1977.
How Birds Fly, illustrated by Lorence F. Bjorklund, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1977.
Getting Born, illustrated with photographs and with drawings by Corbett Jones, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1978.
How Animals Defend Their Young, Dutton (New York, NY), 1978.
Immigrant Kids, Dutton (New York, NY), 1980.
Tooth and Claw: A Look at Animal Weapons, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1980.
They Lived with the Dinosaurs, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1980.
Animal Superstars: Biggest, Strongest, Fastest, Smartest, Prentice-Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1981.
Farm Babies, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1981.
When Winter Comes, illustrated by Pamela Johnson, Dutton (New York, NY), 1981.
Can Bears Predict Earthquakes? Unsolved Mysteries of Animal Behavior, Prentice-Hall (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1982.
Killer Fish, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1982.
Killer Snakes, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1982.
Children of the Wild West, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1983.
Dinosaurs and Their Young, illustrated by Leslie Morrill, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1983.
Rattlesnakes, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1984.
Cowboys of the Wild West, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1985.
Sharks, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1985.
Indian Chiefs, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1987.
Lincoln: A Photobiography, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1987.
Buffalo Hunt, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1988.
Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1990.
The Wright Brothers: How They Invented the Airplane, photographs by Orville and Wilbur Wright, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1991.
An Indian Winter, paintings and drawings by Karl Bodmer, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1992.
Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1993.
Kids at Work: Lewis Hine and the Crusade against Child Labor, with photographs by Lewis Hine, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1994.
The Life and Death of Crazy Horse, drawings by Amos Bad Heart Bull, Holiday House (New York, NY), 1996.
Out of Darkness: The Story of Louis Braille, illustrated by Kate Kiesler, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1997.
Martha Graham: A Dancer's Life, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1998.
Babe Didrikson Zaharias: The Making of a Champion, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 1999.
Give Me Liberty!: The Story of the Declaration of Independence, Holiday House, (New York, NY) 2000.
In the Days of the Vaqueros: America's First True Cowboys, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 2001.
Confucius: The Golden Rule, illustrated by Frederic Clement, Arthur A. Levine, 2002.
In Defense of Liberty: The Story of America's Bill of Rights, Holiday House (New York, NY), 2003.
The Voice that Challenged a Nation: Marian Anderson and the Struggle for Equal Rights, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 2004.
Children of the Great Depression, Clarion Books (New York, NY), 2005.
The Adventures of Marco Polo, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline, A.A. Levine Books (New York, NY), 2006.
Freedom Walkers: The Story of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, Holiday House (New York, NY), 2006.
Holiday House: The First Fifty Years (adult), Holiday House (New York, NY), 1985.
Contributor to Columbia Encyclopedia, 3rd edition, and New Book of Knowledge Annual, 1981–89. Also contributor to periodicals, including Cricket, Ranger Rick, Horn Book, and School Library Journal.
ADAPTATIONS: Lincoln: A Photobiography was adapted as a filmstrip and video, McGraw-Hill Media, 1989.
SIDELIGHTS: The author of more than fifty nonfiction books for children and young adults, Russell Freedman has been honored with many major awards: the Newbery Medal for Lincoln: A Photobiography (Freedman was the first nonfiction author in thirty-two years to win the Newbery and one of only a handful of nonfiction authors to be honored with the medal since it was first presented in 1922); three Newbery Honors, for The Wright Brothers: How They Invented the Airplane, Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery, and The Voice That Challenged a Nation: Marian Anderson and the Struggle for Equal Rights, several Golden Kite Awards for other biographies, as well as the Washington Post/Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award; and in 1998 he was awarded the prestigious Laura Ingalls Wilder Award for the entire body of his work. This respected author has written on subjects such as famous teenagers, animal behavior, and American presidents, and his books are noted for their understandable and entertaining presentation of often-complex information. Freedman pioneered the form he calls a "photobiography," first used in his Lincoln biography, and has continued to employ this creative mix of text and image with a dozen more popular biographies and history books. Dubbed the "John McPhee of juvenile writers" by Michael Dirda in the Washington Post Book World, Freedman writes books that often "build on a suite of historical photographs or paintings, enhanced by a sleekly written, factual text," according to Dirda.
If writing comes naturally to Freedman, he may credit both nature and nurture. Born in 1929 in San Francisco, Freedman grew up in an atmosphere where literary accomplishments were encouraged. "My father was a great storyteller," Freedman related in his Newbery Medal acceptance speech, reprinted in Horn Book. "The problem was, we never knew for sure whether the stories he told were fiction or nonfiction." Freedman's father, a book salesman, met Russell's mother, a clerk, in the bookstore where she worked. "I had the good fortune to grow up in a house filled with books and book talk," the author stated, and often filled with visit-ing authors as well: writers such as John Steinbeck, William Saroyan, and John Masefield all came to dinner at one time or another.
From 1947 to 1949, he attended San Jose State College and graduated in 1951 with a B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley. For the next two years he served with the U.S. Counter Intelligence Corps, part of that time in combat duty in Korea with the 2nd Infantry Division. After his stint in the army, Freedman went to work for the Associated Press in San Francisco as a reporter and editor. "That was where I really learned to write," he told Frank J. Dempsey in a Horn Book interview. He also wrote publicity pieces for television until he came upon something that would change the direction of his life. Freedman found an article about a blind sixteen-year-old boy who had invented a Braille typewriter. Freedman also learned that another blind sixteen-year-old, Louis Braille, had originally developed the Braille system. The article served as the inspiration for Teenagers Who Made History, Freedman's first book.
Since the late sixties, Freedman has written more than twenty books on animal behavior, a subject that has interested him since his youth. He collaborated with James E. Morriss on a series of books that seeks to explain, in simple language, some of the scientific concepts of the animal kingdom. As the titles indicate, the books cover subjects such as How Animals Learn, Animal Instincts, and The Brains of Animals and Man. The books were well received by the educational community, as reflected in their appraisal by a reviewer in Science Books: A Quarterly Review, which stated that Freedman and Morriss's How Animals Learn and Animal Instincts "are among the best for beginning naturalists."
In 1980 Freedman took a break from chronicling wildlife to write a book on a different kind of animal—the human. While attending a photographic exhibit at the New York Historical Society, Freedman was struck by the photographs of children in nineteenth and early twentieth-century America. "What impressed me most of all was the way that those old photographs seemed to defy the passage of time," he wrote in Horn Book. Freedman decided to tell the story behind the photographs, attempting to convey through his words—and some of those very same pictures—a sense of what life was like in those suspended moments of history. The resulting book was titled Immigrant Kids. The book proved to be a turning point; Freedman continued to produce books on animals, but he was increasingly turning his writing attention to people. The books Children of the Wild West and Cowboys of the Wild West followed, earning praise for their accurate portrayal of life in the old West. Richard Snow, for example, wrote in the New York Times Book Review that Children of the Wild West "is a good introduction for young readers to the patterns of life in a Wild West that had nothing at all to do with gambling halls and shootouts."
Cowboys of the Wild West uncovered many myths about this often-romanticized group. A Publishers Weekly reviewer wrote: "Cowboys, readers discover, were really boys. Many were teenagers, a few 'old hands' were in their early twenties; and they were responsible for driving great herds across the plains in the 1800s." Freedman stays away from romanticizing the cowboys, instead describing the many difficulties of life on the range. George Gleason, writing in the School Library Journal, praised the work, declaring that it is "certainly a book to linger over and turn to again and again."
Freedman followed up these two books with a study of Native Americans titled Indian Chiefs. The work features six tribal leaders, including Sitting Bull and Red Cloud. Complete with archival photographs, Freedman gives a balanced picture of the lives and decisions of the great chiefs. Karen P. Zimmerman, writing in the School Library Journal, stated that the account is factual and concluded that Freedman "does not romanticize the Indian viewpoint, nor is he judgmental against the whites." In Buffalo Hunt, Freedman chronicles the importance of the great buffaloes to Native Americans and how their disappearance impacted the Indians' lives.
After discovering the truths behind the myths associated with life in the old West, Freedman decided to separate fact from fiction with respect to one of American history's most intriguing characters, Abraham Lincoln. In his quest to accurately research the book that would become Lincoln, Freedman traveled to Lincoln's birthplace in Kentucky, then to the numerous Lincoln historical sites in Springfield, Illinois, and finally to Ford's Theater in Washington, DC, where Lincoln was assassinated. Freedman was also allowed to examine some of the former president's original handwritten documents, including a letter to Lincoln's wife, Mary, and first-draft notes on his famed Emancipation Proclamation. Freedman's commitment to presenting the facts paid off; critical and popular response toward the book was very favorable. Elaine Fort Weischedel proclaimed in the School Library Journal: "Few, if any, of the many books written for children about Lincoln can compare with Freedman's contribution."
Following the success of Lincoln, Freedman continued to write on historical figures in photobiographies, including Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, and The Wright Brothers. For the first volume, Freedman once again did painstaking research to write a volume about a man whose life had already been chronicled extensively. In Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Freedman tries to bring to life the complicated personal world of the famous president, and the result, according to Alan Brinkley in the New York Times Book Review, is "sensitive [and] evocative…. It presents Roosevelt as an attractive and admirable public figure." Roosevelt's wife is also spotlighted in Eleanor Roosevelt, a "sensitive portrayal" which "captures the spirit" of this remarkable woman, according to Horn Book reviewer Elizabeth S. Watson.
Freedman's interest in inventors led him to write the book The Wright Brothers (1991). The "author's careful research yielded a completely engrossing volume," according to Margaret A. Bush in Horn Book, which "draws deeply on letters, diaries, and other well-documented sources." Freedman dips into the characters of the Wright brothers, showing that their complementary personalities and life experiences helped them become the inventors of modern flight. Critics praised Freedman's selection of photographs and his storytelling ability. Bush claimed that the resulting book is a "fresh, illuminating look at an old story."
Freedman's next book topic was controversial as he profiled Lewis Hine, an early photographer of poor children involved in child labor. Kids at Work: Lewis Hine and the Crusade against Child Labor was published in 1994. Lewis Hine took photographs of children of immigrants in the early 1900s. During those days, it was not uncommon for young children to work in dangerous conditions in the factory. These jobs often left the children seriously injured, or dead. Hine took the photographs to publicize these atrocities to the general public. Freedman told Shannon Maughan in Publishers Weekly that Hine was able to use "a camera as a tool for social change." Iris Tillman Hill wrote in the New York Times Book Review that "Those who want to share a lived sense of history with young children could not do much better than to look at these photographs and read this book with them."
In 1996, Freedman returned to Native American history to write The Life and Death of Crazy Horse, a biography of the great Lakota Sioux chief. Unlike other leaders of the era, Crazy Horse was a quiet, modest man who was also an excellent leader and tactician. He led groups in fights along the Oregon and Bozeman trails, including the Battle of the Little Bighorn, in an attempt to stem the tide of infiltration by pioneers. However, his life ended in a U.S. Army prison, with the fate of Native Americans looking very dim. A Publishers Weekly reviewer remarked: "No dry history this, but a story certain to sweep readers along its tragic path."
Freedman revisited the subject of his first children's book in Out of Darkness: The Story of Louis Braille (1997). Braille was blinded at the age of three after a knife accident. He learned not to turn his injury into a tragedy and worked hard to be accepted into a special school for the blind in Paris at the age of twelve and slowly developed the alphabet which today bears his name. Martha V. Parravano, reviewing Freedman's biography in Horn Book, said that Out of Darkness "brings the central figure to life as vividly as only Freedman can." In Booklist, Hazel Rochman claimed that Freedman "tells the momentous story in quiet chapters in his best plain style."
In 1998, Freedman published his first biography on an artist. His Martha Graham: A Dancer's Life was yet another photobiography, this time of the American dancer, teacher, and choreographer who, born in Pittsburgh in 1895, went on to become one of the seminal figures in the world in modern dance. "Freedman's focus," noted Booklist contributor Rochman, "is on how [Graham] created a thrilling new modern dance language that connected movement with emotion." Rochman concluded that this was another "great Y[oung] A[dult] title that will appeal to adults as much as to teens." A reviewer for Publishers Weekly commented that the "venerable author hooks readers in immediately" in this "outstanding biography [which] speaks not only to dancers but to anyone interested in the arts, history, or the American entrepreneurial spirit." Reviewing the same title in the New York Times Book Review, Theodore W. Striggles felt that "Freedman has written a fine introduction to Martha Graham, and not just for the young readers." Striggles concluded, "Martha Graham is so smoothly written that there are only a few moments during which the adult reader is reminded of the primary audience for whom the book is intended." Susan P. Bloom, writing in a highly favorable review in Horn Book, stated: "Once again, preeminent biographer Russell Freedman proves the art of nonfiction." Bloom further commented: "No reader, whether interested in dance or not, will want to miss Graham's extraordinary story, Freedman's remarkable achievement."
From dance, Freedman turned his hand to sports, chronicling the remarkable career of Babe Didrikson, who broke records in golf, track and field, and other sports, and all at a time when opportunities for females in athletics were very limited. "Freedman is on top of his game with this engaging profile of one of this century's most remarkable athletes and larger-than-life personalities," wrote Luann Toth in a School Library Journal review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias: The Making of a Champion. Once again Freedman blended thorough research, clear prose, and a wealth of visual images to come up with a superlative biography. Toth concluded: "Befitting a champion, this superbly crafted, impeccably documented biography ranks head and shoulders above its peers." A reviewer in Horn Book felt that "Freedman's measured yet lively style captures the spirit of the great athlete," and that the plentiful black-and-white photographs "capture Babe's spirit and dashing good looks." A contributor for Publishers Weekly called Freedman's biography "exemplary," and concluded that this "celebratory work gives readers a chance to cheer Zaharias's legendary life."
Freedman welcomed in the new millennium with a piece of more orthodox history, Give Me Liberty!: The Story of the Declaration of Independence. Horn Book reviewer Mary M. Burns noted that Freedman, a "dependable historian and biographer … is also an exciting writer who can make readers feel that they are witnesses to significant happenings." With Give Me Liberty!, he takes the reader into the story leading to the drafting and acceptance of the Declaration of Independence, from the Boston Tea Party to the signing of the document that announced American sovereignty. "Freedman weaves a tapestry that combines political observations, character interpretations, and popular sentiments in a style accessible to middle-school readers yet equally appealing to adults," commented Burns. "How does [Freedman] do it?" wondered GraceAnne A. DeCandido in a Booklist review of the same book. DeCandido went on to note: "Once again Freedman takes a crucial moment in American history and imbues it with living grace and powerful tension." Leah J. Sparks also had high praise for Freedman in a School Library Journal review: "Known for his stellar biographies and superb nonfiction, Freedman now offers a fine book about the creation of the nation's most important historical documents."
With The Voice that Challenged a Nation, Freedman examines the influential life and career of Marian Anderson, "one of the greatest American singers and historical figures in the fight for civil rights," noted Nola Theiss in Kliatt. Recognized for her exceptional singing voice even as a child, Anderson quickly developed her talent with the help of her church and community. As an African American in the 1920s and 1930s, however, Anderson constantly encountered racism in the United States. A signal event in civil rights history occurred when the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) refused to allow Anderson to sing in their performing venue, Constitution Hall. In response, first lady Eleanor Roosevelt resigned from the DAR and arranged for Anderson to perform at a concert at the Lincoln Memorial on Easter Sunday, 1939. School Library Journal reviewer John Peters called the book a "typically well-reasoned, carefully documented account" of its subject's life and influence. Theiss called Freedman's account a "beautifully told and narrated biography."
In Children of the Great Depression, Freedman looks at America's bleak times from the perspective of the youngest and sometimes most vulnerable citizens. He describes the tremendous difficulties children and young people faced during the Depression, including the frequent necessity for hard labor, the difficulty in finding appropriate clothing or enough to eat, and the constant struggle just to survive. "Freedman never minimizes this bleakness, but he also addresses childhood diversions of the Depression, such as movies and music," noted Betty Carter in Horn Book. Freedman includes salient photographs as well as comparative cost data, first-hand accounts of the travails of the Depression, and clarifying comparisons between modern times and Depression days. Freedman helps readers understand the confluence of political, economic, and social forces that resulted in the Depression.
Freedman reaches further back into history for a biography of a famous explorer in The Adventures of Marco Polo. Freedman considers the fact that there are at least 150 known versions of Polo's famous book, The Description of the World, and here he tries to sort out some of the fact from the fiction represented by these many books. Freedman delves into these sources to find accounts of Polo's 24-year journey, begun when he was seventeen years old, which took him across China, India, and the Middle East. Though Freedman relates the stories of Marco Polo's adventures as they are known, he also readily admits that some scholars have expressed doubts about the complete truth of the explorer's claims. There is doubt, for example, about Polo's close association with Kublai Khan and his claim to have been a governor of Yangzhou for three years. Booklist reviewer Ilene Cooper observed: "This is a glorious piece of bookmaking; readers will find it a pleasure to explore." A Publishers Weekly reviewer concluded that Freedman's "impeccable research, historical fidelity and flair for engrossing narrative nonfiction combine with handsome bookmaking for a highly recommended biography" A Kirkus Reviews contributor declared it to be "simply splendid."
Returning to more contemporary accounts of relevance to the civil rights movement, Freedman tells the story of a pivotal protest and a prominent protestor in Freedom Walkers: The Story of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. He relates how the public transportation system in Montgomery, AL, was deeply segregated, with African American bus riders often forced to give up their seats to whites. When activist E.D. Nixon was looking for a person to best represent the civil rights movement, he selected Rosa Parks, an intelligent and articulate forty-two-year-old who had already been involved in civil rights work. Parks's famous refusal to give up her seat to a white passenger resulted in her arrest, which sparked a strike against the Montgomery bus system that lasted for more than a year and which led to a pivotal U.S. Supreme Court ruling against Alabama's segregated bus laws. Freedman provides background material on other key players that emerged during the time of the protests, and also considers how Parks's arrest helped launch the modern incarnation of the civil rights movement. "The expertly paced text, balanced but impassioned, emphasizes the careful strategizing, organizing, and restraint" that gave the protest its power and helped ensure its success, noted Kitty Flynn in Horn Book. A Kirkus Reviews critic concluded: "Clear prose, well-chosen photographs and superb source notes and bibliography make this an essential source on the topic."
Biography is the format in which Freedman most likes to write. In an interview with James Cross Giblin in Horn Book, Freedman expanded on his reasons for writing nonfiction for children: "A writer of books for children has an impact on readers' minds and imaginations that very few writers for adults can match. But beyond that, writing nonfiction for children gives me, or any writer, tremendous artistic freedom. I can write about almost any subject that interests me and that I believe will interest a child. I can be a generalist rather than a specialist…. It's a much greater challenge to convey the spirit and essence of a life in a hundred pages than to write a 600- or 800-page 'definitive' tome that includes every known detail about that life. A nonfiction children's book requires concision, selection, judgment, lucidity, unwavering focus, and the most artful use of language and storytelling techniques. I regard such books as a specialized and demanding art form."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Children's Literature Review, Volume 20, Thomson Gale (Detroit, MI), 1990.
Meet the Authors and Illustrators, Volume II, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1993.
Twentieth-Century Young-Adult Writers, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 1994.
Ward, Martha E., Authors of Books for Young People, Scarecrow Press (Metuchen, NJ), 1990.
Booklist, July, 1993, review of Eleanor Roosevelt: A Life of Discovery, p. 1962; March 1, 1997, Hazel Rochman, review of Out of Darkness: The Story of Louis Braille, pp. 1157-1158; April, 1998, Hazel Rochman, review of Martha Graham: A Dancer's Life, p. 1324; July, 1999, review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, p. 1932; March 1, 2000, Stephanie Zvirin, review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, p. 1248; March 15, 2000, review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, p. 1359; October 1, 2000, GraceAnne A. DeCandido, review of Give Me Liberty!: The Story of the Declaration of Independence, p. 336; September 15, 2006, Hazel Rochman, review of Freedom Walkers: The Story of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, p. 60; October 15, 2006, Ilene Cooper, review of The Adventures of Marco Polo, p. 46.
Horn Book, January-February, 1986, Russell Freedman, "Perusing the Pleasure Principle"; July-August, 1988, Russell Freedman, "Newbery Medal Acceptance," pp. 444-451; July-August, 1988, Frank J. Dempsey, "Russell Freedman," pp. 452-456; March-April, 1991, pp. 213-214; July-August, 1991, Margaret A. Bush, review of The Wright Brothers: How They Invented the Airplane, pp. 475-476; January-February, 1994, Elizabeth S. Watson, review of Eleanor Roosevelt, p. 87; November-December, 1994, p. 744; May-June, 1997, Martha V. Parravano, review of Out of Darkness, pp. 339-340; July-August, 1998, James Cross Giblin, "Russell Freedman," pp. 455-459; July-August, 1998 Susan P. Bloom, review of Martha Graham, pp.511-512; September-October, 1999, review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, p. 623; July-August, 2000, p. 426; January-February, 2001, Mary M. Burns, review of Give Me Liberty!, p. 109; January-February, 2006, Betty Carter, review of Children of the Great Depression, p. 100; May-June, 2006, "Golden Kite Awards," p. 365; September-October, 2006, Kitty Flynn, review of Freedom Walkers, p. 604.
Kirkus Reviews, September 1, 2006, review of Freedom Walkers, p. 903; September 15, 2006, review of The Adventures of Marco Polo, p. 953.
Kliatt, January, 2006, Nola Theiss, audiobook review of The Voice that Challenged a Nation, p. 54.
New York Times Book Review, November 13, 1983, Richard Snow, review of Children of the Wild West, p. 52; March 17, 1991, Alan Brinkley, review of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, p. 26; November 14, 1993, p. 40; November 13, 1994, Iris Tillman Hill, review of Kids at Work: Lewis Hine and the Crusade against Child Labor, p. 23; May 17, 1998, Theodore W. Striggles, review of Martha Graham, p. 29.
Publishers Weekly, November 15, 1985, review of Cowboys of the Wild West; November 27, 1987, review of Lincoln: A Photobiography, p. 86; July 19, 1993, Shannon Maughan, interview with Russell Freedman, pp. 228, 234; June 17, 1996, review of The Life and Death of Crazy Horse, p. 67; April 6, 1998, review of Martha Graham, p. 80; July 19, 1999, review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, p. 196; February 14, 2000, p. 99; November 6, 2000, p. 93; October 2, 2006, review of The Adventures of Marco Polo, p. 65.
Reading Teacher, November, 2004, review of In Defense of Liberty: The Story of America's Bill of Rights, p. 291; November, 2005, Lynda Hawkes, review of The Voice that Challenged a Nation, p. 278.
School Library Journal, December, 1985, George Gleason, review of Cowboys of the Wild West, p. 99; May, 1987, Karen P. Zimmerman, review of Indian Chiefs, pp. 110-111; December, 1987, Elaine Fort Weischedel, review of Lincoln, pp. 93-94; July, 1999, Luann Toth, review of Babe Didrikson Zaharias, p. 106; October, 2000, Leah J. Sparks, review of Give Me Liberty!, p. 183; December, 2000, p. 53; March, 2006, John Peters, review of The Voice that Challenged a Nation: Marian Anderson and the Struggle for Equal Rights, p. 90.
Science Books: A Quarterly Review, May, 1970, reviews of How Animals Learn and Animal Instincts, pp. 2-3.
Washington Post Book World, July 12, 1992, Michael Dirda, review of An Indian Winter, p. 8.
Childrenslit.com, http://www.childrenslit.com/ (December 5, 2006), biography of Russell Freedman.
Eduplace.com, http://www.eduplace.com/ (December 5, 2006), biography of Russell Freedman.