Great news, children! Your votes for the Children’s and Teen Choice Book Awards are in! And Rush Limbaugh has been crowned in the laurels he so richly deserves … for children’s book writing.
To be fair, I read “Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims: Time-Travel Adventures With Exceptional Americans” and described it as “historical fanfiction that Rush Limbaugh has written about himself.” Which is to say, I loved it! Vicky Smith wrote in Kirkus Reviews that “to convey those politics and that history with such disdain for even the most rudimentary standards of storytelling is a wrong just as staggering as the awfulness of Limbaugh’s books — though not nearly so laughable.” So I think she enjoyed it as well.
It includes a talking horse named Liberty and such memorable lines as, “Liberty’s mouth was so close to my face that his whiskers tickled my ear. I whispered back, ‘Nobody is going to use you. They might as well try to tame a thousand wild horses with nothing but a whistle.’ ”
Nobody can tame you, Liberty. Nobody can use you, not even Rush. No matter how much he might desire it. You can’t be tamed, like mid-period Miley Cyrus or a herd of cats.
And here is one of the things the talking horse chooses to say to Rush Revere: “Maybe you should get your own radio talk show. You know, callers call in with questions and you give them advice and stuff. I’d totally call you!” Get a historical room, you two!
In other words, it is easy to see what the Youth of Today liked in this book. No wonder they voted in such large numbers. “That is what we were missing,” the kids said, as they voted, ignoring such options as “Divergent.” “More promotion of Two if by Tea branded iced tea, and a lot of talk about how the main character ought to have a radio show. Hunger Games, schmunger games! I’d like a book that stars a substitute teacher who is pretty much literally the opposite of Ms. Frizzle (no science! Just magic! No bus! Just a horse!) and that offers didactic explanations of why communal living is wrong, not dramatic fight scenes.”
See, the kids get it. Forget these dystopian fantasies that the “kids” are “into” these “days.” I bet their parents were the only ones who voted for those.
There is nothing that your average middle-schooler likes more than an ill-constructed world (a horse that can stop time by concentrating really hard — the same way we can all stop climate change, any time we would like, probably) with weird, terrible, open-source illustrations and lots of typos, written by a hip, dynamic figure like a talk radio host. “AM AIRWAVES, Y’ALL! THAT’S THE DREAM!” as the kids like to say to one another.