I've read several of Whitney Stewart's bios, and come to realize she is a highly conscientious biographer who bases her bios on iterviews with her subjects. Few biographers for children bother with interviews; most glean highlights about theis subjects' lives from secondary materials.
In contrst, Stewart interviews her subjects. She interviewed the dalai lama for this book and it shows in the quality and quantity of details she presents. For example, she mentions a heartbreaking childhood memory of the dalai lama's: When he was a child, a poor couple passed their house with a dead child. The Dalai Lama's mother offered to help them bury the child, but they were so desperately hungry that--well, you can guess what they were intending, in their desperation. Instead, the dalai lama's family fed and helped them.
That's the kind of detail a biographer doesn't come up with easily--not unless they have their subject before them, telling them their first hand story.
I am an adult reader, and feel the book, like all her bios, are appropriate for both kids and adults. Bravo!