I'll paste a past post of mine below that will help you as you work through Bigger Hearts.
This thread explains why we chose the Eggleston books and why we find them to be living:viewtopic.php?f=12&t=202
On a sidenote, I went to school during the new textbook era when books began to be filled with multiple pictures but included very little history content. I can honestly say I remember nothing from my growing up years about history. We definitely did not do any biographical readings, and I never felt like the people we read about were real people. They just didn't jump off of the page in any memorable way, except for their pictures. By the time I became a public school teacher, the textbooks were even broader in their "coverage", covering everything in a sentence or two but not really looking at anything or anybody in history in depth. History became social studies and with it actual "history" was left behind.
So, when we began homeschooling, and we began coming across history books that were written years ago in a living way (when the writers were much closer to the time period in which the history was happening), we knew this was the way we wanted our children to learn history. In our search for this type of book, we found that many homeschooling companies did not use this type of book but instead used either textbooks, or read through an encyclopedia as a spine, or used historical fiction as a spine, or did a combination of these.
Each of these options has its concerns. Using textbooks was too similar of a route to that which we'd grown up doing, so our family desired to stay away from that route (as we saw little fruit from it within our own experiences). Reading from an encyclopedia like a textbook does little to aid in actual retention or understanding of history, as encyclopedias are filled with snippets of information and many sidebars. To read through an encyclopedia is also using the book in a way other than it was intended to be used, as encyclopedias are meant to be reference books. Using historical fiction as a history spine also presents some problems, as historical fiction gives the impression that all of what is being read is true and leaves the reader wondering what truly is a part of history and what is fiction.
So, at HOD we desire to use accurate living books as our spines as much as possible and then fill-in the background details with historical fiction or with other genres that give a fuller picture of the period. We directly tie the day's activities to the readings to give them even more life.
I'd encourage you to give Eggleston at least 9 weeks of just reading the book as written (without paraphrasing or stopping to explain as you go) before making a judgment about his worth as a writer. CM maintained that kiddos could understand much more than we give them credit for if we only would stop getting in the way of the text. If you search the board for past posts on Eggleston, you'll find many moms who grew to love his style of writing right along with their children. The habit of attention needs to be cultivated in order for kiddos to interact with readings that are more living. They definitely take a more mature listener. In the end this is what makes the reading more memorable.