Fantastic Failures (Reynolds)

This book, written by a seventh grade English teacher, is replete with the biographies of those who faced significant challenges in reaching their goals.  Just a few of those featured are Nelson Mandela, Rosa Parks, J. K. Rowling, Oprah Winfrey, (the horse) Seabiscuit, Vincent Van Gogh, Christopher Reeve, Albert Einstein and Hillary Rodham Clinton.  Each entry starts with a fantasy description of how things went before, more accurately, detailing the setbacks that were faced along the way.  The author believes that it is important that young people focus, not on being perfect, but on risk taking and learning.  He tells his own story of having been a poor student and then turning things around.  The author offers comments to students suggesting coping mechanisms when they face challenges.  This book is broad and expansive.  It would be an excellent resource for students and school libraries.

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