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Us Presidents: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best kids books about US Presidents?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to US Presidents. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about US Presidents.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid, and you can also use our table of contents to jump to particular topics you think your kid will enjoy.

When it comes to children’s stories about US Presidents, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Abraham Lincoln to popular sellers like Stink: The Incredible Shrinking Kid to some of our favorite hidden gems like Abe’s Honest Words.

We hope this list of kids books about US Presidents can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

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Top 10 Books About Us Presidents

#1
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Abe's Honest Words
Written by Doreen Rappaport & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

From the time he was a young boy roaming the forests of the unsettled Midwest, Abraham Lincoln knew in his heart that slavery was deeply wrong. A voracious reader, Lincoln spent every spare moment of his days filling his mind with knowledge, from history to literature to mathematics, preparing himself to one day lead the country he loved toward greater equality and prosperity. Despite the obstacles he faced as a self-educated man from the back woods, Lincoln persevered in his political career, and his compassion and honesty gradually earned him the trust of many Americans. As president, he guided the nation through a long and bitter civil war and penned the document that would lead to the end of slavery in the United States. The passion for humanity that defined Lincoln’s life shines through in this momentous follow-up to Martin’s Big Words and John’s Secret Dreams. Told in Doreen Rappaport’s accessible, absorbing prose, and brought to life in powerful illustrations by Kadir Nelson, Abe’s Honest Words is an epic portrait of a truly great American president.

#2
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Diana’s White House Garden
Written by Elisa Carbone & illustrated by Jen Hill
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Diana Hopkins lived in a white house. THE White House.

World War II is in full force across the seas. It’s 1943, President Roosevelt is in office, and Diana’s father, Harry Hopkins, is his chief advisor. And Diana wants to be part of the war effort. After some well-intentioned missteps (her quarantine sign on her father’s office door was not well-received), the President requests her help with his newest plan for the country’s survival: Victory Gardens! From award-winning author Elisa Carbone comes the true story of how Diana Hopkins started her own Victory Garden on the White House lawn under the tutelage of Eleanor Roosevelt. With dedication and patience, she showed the nation that the war effort started first on the homefront.

#3
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Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Presents an illustrated biography of Abraham Lincoln, describing how his lifelong love for reading helped him to become the sixteenth president of the United States.

#4
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This Little President: A Presidential Primer
Written by Joan Holub & illustrated by Daniel Roode
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Learn all about the US presidents with this fun and colorful board book perfect for leaders-in-training! Leading our country. Helping you and me. Keeping all fifty states safe, happy, and free. Little presidents have a great big job. Now even the youngest patriots can learn about America’s presidential history with this bright and playful board book. Highlighting ten of the most memorable presidents—and featuring all forty-four on the last page—parents and presidents-in-training alike will love sharing this fun primer full of age-appropriate facts, leadership skills, and White House history.

#5
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A Picture Book of George Washington
Written by David A. Adler & illustrated by John Wallner and Alexandra Wallner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The life and legacy of our nation’s first president, also known as commander of the Continental Army, husband to Martha, and an avid farmer and equestrian.

Over two hundred years after his death, George Washington remains one of the most studied figures in American history. This clear and concise picture book biography covers the important facts and historical background, complemented by charming illustrations. The text details Washington’s early life as well as the Revolutionary War and his impressive career as leader of the newly formed United States. Young readers will love learning more about the man who was “first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen.” Back matter features a timeline.

Repackaged paperback edition has an elegant new series design!

For almost thirty years, David Adler’s Picture Book Biography series has profiled famous people who changed the world. Colorful, kid-friendly illustrations combine with Adler’s “expert mixtures of facts and personality” (Booklist) to introduce young readers to history through compelling biographies of presidents, heroes, inventors, explorers, and adventurers. These books are ideal for first and second graders interested in history, or who need reliable sources for school book reports.

#6
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I Am George Washington
Written by Brad Meltzer & illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

We can all be heroes. That’s the inspiring message of this New York Times Bestselling picture book biography series from historian and author Brad Meltzer. Learn all about George Washington, America’s first president. George Washington was one of the greatest leaders the world has ever known. He was never afraid to be the first to try something, from exploring the woods around his childhood home to founding a brand new nation, the United States of America. With his faith in the American people and tremendous bravery, he helped win the Revolutionary War and became the country’s first president. Each picture book in this series is a biography of a significant historical figure, told in a simple, conversational, vivacious way, and always focusing on a character trait that makes the person a role model for kids. The heroes are depicted as children throughout, telling their life stories in first-person present tense, which keeps the books playful and accessible to young children. And each book ends with a line of encouragement, a direct quote, photos, a timeline, and a source list.

#7
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Meet George Washington
Written by Patricia A. Pingry & illustrated by Stephanie Britt
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

A biography of the nation’s first president, including his youth in Virginia, his army career, and his leadership of the newly formed United States of America.

#8
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The Superlative A. Lincoln
Written by Eileen R. Meyer & illustrated by Dave Szalay
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Tallest, wisest, most studious—Lincoln was simply superlative! Get to know the personal side of Honest Abe (his LEAST FAVORITE nickname) through fresh and funny poems expressing his superlative nature. Abraham Lincoln is famous for many extremes: he was the TALLEST president, who gave the GREATEST SPEECH and had the STRONGEST conviction. But did you know that he was also the MOST DISTRACTED farmer, the MOST TALENTED wrestler and inventor, and the CRAFTIEST storyteller?

#9
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The Next President: The Unexpected Beginnings and Unwritten Future of America’s Presidents
Written by Kate Messner and Adam Rex
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

An inspiring and informative book for kids about the past and future of America’s presidents.

Who will be the NEXT president? Could it be you? When George Washington became the first president of the United States, there were nine future presidents already alive in America, doing things like practicing law or studying medicine.

When JFK became the thirty-fifth president, there were 10 future presidents already alive in America, doing things like hosting TV shows and learning the saxophone.

And right now—today!—there are at least 10 future presidents alive in America. They could be playing basketball, like Barack Obama, or helping in the garden, like Dwight D. Eisenhower. They could be solving math problems or reading books. They could be making art—or already making change.

• A breezy, kid-friendly survey of American history and American presidents
• Great for teachers, librarians, and other educators
• Kate Messner’s nonfiction picture books have been lauded by critics and received a variety of awards.

For young readers and students who loved The New Big Book of Presidents, Lincoln and Kennedy: A Pair to Compare, and Kid Presidents: True Tales of Childhood from America’s Presidents.

A helpful addition to curriculums of 5th- to 8th-grade students studying U.S. History and civics and the federal government.

• For readers ages 8–12
• U.S. history for kids
• Students, librarians, teachers
• 5th–8th-grade kids

From award-winning author Kate Messner and New York Times bestselling artist Adam Rex comes a timely and compelling compendium about the U.S. presidents—before they were presidents.

Kate Messner is an award-winning author whose many books for kids have been selected as Best Books by the New York Times, Junior Library Guild, IndieBound, and Bank Street College of Education. She lives on Lake Champlain with her family.

Adam Rex is the author and illustrator of many beloved picture books and novels, including Nothing Rhymes with Orange and the New York Times bestseller Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich. He has worked with the likes of Jon Scieszka, Mac Barnett, Jeff Kinney, and Neil Gaiman. He lives in Tucson, Arizona.

#10
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Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek
Written by Deborah Hopkinson & illustrated by John Hendrix
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

In Knob Creek, Kentucky, in 1816, seven-year-old Abe Lincoln falls into a creek and is rescued by his best friend, Austin Gollaher.

Table of Contents
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Books About Us Presidents and Abraham Lincoln

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Abe's Honest Words
Written by Doreen Rappaport & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

From the time he was a young boy roaming the forests of the unsettled Midwest, Abraham Lincoln knew in his heart that slavery was deeply wrong. A voracious reader, Lincoln spent every spare moment of his days filling his mind with knowledge, from history to literature to mathematics, preparing himself to one day lead the country he loved toward greater equality and prosperity. Despite the obstacles he faced as a self-educated man from the back woods, Lincoln persevered in his political career, and his compassion and honesty gradually earned him the trust of many Americans. As president, he guided the nation through a long and bitter civil war and penned the document that would lead to the end of slavery in the United States. The passion for humanity that defined Lincoln’s life shines through in this momentous follow-up to Martin’s Big Words and John’s Secret Dreams. Told in Doreen Rappaport’s accessible, absorbing prose, and brought to life in powerful illustrations by Kadir Nelson, Abe’s Honest Words is an epic portrait of a truly great American president.

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Mr. Lincoln's Whiskers
Written by Karen B. Winnick & illustrated by Boyds Mills Press Staff
Thoughts from B is for Bookworm
This book is based on a true story, and it has copies of the real letters in the back of the book. Knowing the story is true made me like this book so much more. The illustrations aren't my favorite, but a fun story about a little girl and how she helped Abraham Lincoln. :)
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

Complete with letter reproductions, this story tells of eleven-year-old Grace Bedell’s written suggestion to President Lincoln that he grow a beard and the amazing events that followed as result. Reprint.

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Abe Lincoln at Last!
Written by Mary Pope Osborne & illustrated by Sal Murdocca
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

The magic tree house whisks Jack and Annie to Washington D.C. in the 1860s where they meet Abraham Lincoln and collect a feather that will help break a magic spell.

Honorable Mentions
Lincoln and His Boys book
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Finding Lincoln book
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Abraham Lincoln Comes Home book
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A. Lincoln and Me book
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  1. Lincoln and His Boys - Historians claim him as one of America’s most revered presidents. But to his rambunctious sons, Abraham Lincoln was above all a playful and loving father. Here is Lincoln as seen by two of his boys: Willie, thrilled to be on his first train trip when Lincoln was deciding to run for president; Willie and Tad barging into Cabinet meetings to lift Lincoln’s spirits in the early days of the Civil War, Tad accompanying him to Richmond just after the South’s defeat. With the war raging and the Union under siege, we see history unfolding through Willie’s eyes and then through Tad’s — and we see Lincoln rising above his own inborn sadness and personal tragedy through his devotion to his sons. With evocative and engaging illustrations by P.J. Lynch, Rosemary Wells offers a carefully researched biography that gives us a Lincoln not frozen in time but accessible and utterly real. Back matter includes an author’s note.

  2. Finding Lincoln - In segregated 1950s Alabama, Louis cannot use the public library to research a class assignment, but one of the librarians lets him in after hours and helps him find the book that he needs. Includes an author’s note with historical information about library segregation in the South.

  3. Abraham Lincoln Comes Home - When Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in 1865, the country grieved for the courageous president who had guided them through the Civil War. Over the course of thirteen somber days, people paid homage as Lincoln’s funeral train made its way from Washington, D.C., to Springfield, Illinois. In moving prose and stunning paintings, a young boy experiences the deep feelings evoked by the assassination and death of a major historical figure, during a time of great change in the country.

  4. A. Lincoln and Me - With the help of his teacher, a young boy realizes that he not only shares his birthday and similar physical appearance with Abraham Lincoln, but that he is like him in other ways as well.

Books About Us Presidents and 1850-1899

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Abe Lincoln Crosses a Creek
Written by Deborah Hopkinson & illustrated by John Hendrix
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

In Knob Creek, Kentucky, in 1816, seven-year-old Abe Lincoln falls into a creek and is rescued by his best friend, Austin Gollaher.

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Abraham Lincoln
Written by Marion Dane Bauer & illustrated by Liz Goulet Dubois
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Presents a simple biography of the sixteenth president of the United States.

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Honey, the Dog Who Saved Abe Lincoln
Written by Shari Swanson & illustrated by Chuck Groenink
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Based on a little-known tale from Abraham Lincoln’s childhood, this charming picture book written by debut author Shari Swanson and illustrated by acclaimed artist Chuck Groenink tells a classic story of a boy, his dog, and a daring rescue.

Deeply researched and charmingly told, this is the true story of one extra-special childhood rescue—a dog named Honey.

Long before Abraham Lincoln led the nation or signed the Emancipation Proclamation, he was just a barefoot kid running around Knob Creek, Kentucky, setting animals free from traps and snatching frogs out of the jaws of snakes.

One day, young Abe found a stray dog with a broken leg and named him Honey. He had no idea that the scruffy pup would find his way into Abe’s heart, become his best friend, and—one fateful day—save his life.

Honorable Mentions
Looking at Lincoln book
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Who was Abraham Lincoln? book
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Thomas Jefferson book
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Where's Your Hat, Abe Lincoln? book
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  1. Looking at Lincoln - Abraham Lincoln is one of the first giants of history children are introduced to, and now Maira Kalman brings him to life with her trademark style and enthusiasm. Lincoln’s legacy is everywhere – there he is on your penny and five-dollar bill. And we are still the United States because Lincoln helped hold them together. But who was he, really? The little girl in this book wants to find out. Among the many other things, she discovers our sixteenth president was a man who believed in freedom for all, had a dog named Fido, loved Mozart, apples, and his wife’s vanilla cake, and kept his notes in his hat. From his boyhood in a log cabin to his famous presidency and untimely death, Kalman shares Lincoln’s remarkable life with young readers in a fresh and exciting way.

  2. Who was Abraham Lincoln? - Highlights the life and achievements of the sixteenth president of the United States, discussing his childhood years, his rise through politics, and the major decisions he made as president during the Civil War.

  3. Thomas Jefferson - Renowned artist Maira Kalman sheds light on the fascinating life and interests of the Renaissance man who was our third president. Thomas Jefferson is perhaps best known for writing the Declaration of Independence—but there’s so much more to discover. This energetic man was interested in everything. He played violin, spoke seven languages and was a scientist, naturalist, botanist, mathematician and architect. He designed his magnificent home, Monticello, which is full of objects he collected from around the world. Our first foodie, he grew over fifteen kinds of peas and advocated a mostly vegetarian diet. And oh yes, as our third president, he doubled the size of the United States and sent Lewis and Clark to explore it. He also started the Library of Congress and said, “I cannot live without books.” But monumental figures can have monumental flaws, and Jefferson was no exception. Although he called slavery an “abomination,” he owned about 150 slaves. As she did in Looking at Lincoln, Maira Kalman shares a president’s remarkable, complicated life with young readers, making history come alive with her captivating text and stunning illustrations.

  4. Where's Your Hat, Abe Lincoln? - Abe Lincoln is worried. He cannot find his hat anywhere. Will his friends help him find it? Frederick Douglass is busy writing a book. Clara Barton is busy nursing wounded soldiers. What will Abe do? From Harriett Tubman to Ulysses S. Grant, nobody seems to have the time to join the search. Will Abraham Lincoln find his hat in time to deliver the Gettysburg Address? This colorful and humorous board book primer features some of the most prominent figures of American history and introduces historians of all ages to the incredible beginning of the United States of America.

Want to see books about 1850-1899?

Books About Us Presidents and 19th Century

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Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Presents an illustrated biography of Abraham Lincoln, describing how his lifelong love for reading helped him to become the sixteenth president of the United States.

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Abe Lincoln's Hat
Written by Martha Brenner & illustrated by Donald Cook
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Because of his absentmindedness, Abraham Lincoln begins to carry important things—letters, legal documents, his checkbook—in his trademark top hat. Simultaneous.

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A Picture Book of Abraham Lincoln
Written by David A. Adler & illustrated by John Wallner and Alexandra Wallner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Follows the life of the popular president, from his childhood on the frontier to his assassination after the end of the Civil War.

Honorable Mentions
Lincoln: A Photobiography book
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Abe Lincoln Remembers book
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Stand Tall, Abe Lincoln book
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Meet Abraham Lincoln book
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  1. Lincoln: A Photobiography - Abraham Lincoln stood out in a crowd as much for his wit and rollicking humor as for his height. This Newbery Medal-winning biography of our Civil War president is warm, appealing, and illustrated with dozens of carefully chosen photographs and prints. Russell Freedman begins with a lively account of Abraham Lincoln’s boyhood, his career as a country lawyer, and his courtship and marriage to Mary Todd. Then the author focuses on the presidential years (1861 to 1865), skillfullly explaining the many complex issues Lincoln grappled with as he led a deeply divided nation through the Civil War. The book’s final chapter is a moving account of that tragic evening in Ford’s Theatre on April 14, 1865. Concludes with a sampling of Lincoln writings and a detailed list of Lincoln historical sites. This title has been selected as a Common Core Text Exemplar (Grades 2-3, Read Aloud Informational Text).

  2. Abe Lincoln Remembers - A man of wisdom and courage. President Abraham Lincoln sits alone in the White House one evening in 1865. The war between the states is over at last, and the slaves are free. This man has come a long way from his small log cabin in Kentucky. What is he thinking about? What memories run through his mind? Powerful text and stunning, historically accurate paintings combine to present a unique portrait of one of the greatest presidents in American history.

  3. Stand Tall, Abe Lincoln - A look at the early years of our sixteenth president.

  4. Meet Abraham Lincoln - Highlights the life of the man who was President during the Civil War and who was responsible for ending slavery in America—forever. Reissue.

Books About Us Presidents and Colonial And Revolutionary Periods

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I Am George Washington
Written by Brad Meltzer & illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

We can all be heroes. That’s the inspiring message of this New York Times Bestselling picture book biography series from historian and author Brad Meltzer. Learn all about George Washington, America’s first president. George Washington was one of the greatest leaders the world has ever known. He was never afraid to be the first to try something, from exploring the woods around his childhood home to founding a brand new nation, the United States of America. With his faith in the American people and tremendous bravery, he helped win the Revolutionary War and became the country’s first president. Each picture book in this series is a biography of a significant historical figure, told in a simple, conversational, vivacious way, and always focusing on a character trait that makes the person a role model for kids. The heroes are depicted as children throughout, telling their life stories in first-person present tense, which keeps the books playful and accessible to young children. And each book ends with a line of encouragement, a direct quote, photos, a timeline, and a source list.

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A Parade for George Washington
Written by David A. Adler & illustrated by John O'Brien
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Crowds cheering, trumpets sounding, and cannons firing! Follow along as George Washington journeys from Virginia to his inauguration in New York City.

After the Revolutionary War, the newly formed U.S. Congress chose the first president. Every vote was for Washington.

So began Washington’s week-long trip from his home in Virginia to New York City, where he would be inaugurated. At every stop on George Washington’s route, people were determined to celebrate their very first president. In Baltimore citizens rode along with Washington for seven miles, in Philadelphia people chanted “Long live George Washington,” and in Elizabethtown, NJ, Washington was met with a parade of boats so spectacular that he would later write in his diary: “the decorations of the ships, the roar of cannon . . . filled my mind with sensations.”

David A. Adler deftly retells this joyous journey in information-packed prose, while John O’Brien masterfully illustrates our complex and beautiful new nation in his signature style. Included in the meticulously detailed artwork are period-accurate maritime signal flags for kids to decode and buildings like Federal Hall in New York City that still stand today. Back matter includes a time line, source notes, and a bibliography.

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George Washington and the General's Dog
Written by Frank Murphy & illustrated by Richard Walz
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Children will delight at this little-known-story about our nation’s first president, George Washington, that makes for perfect President’s Day readers!

Boom! Bang! Guns fire! Cannons roar! This Step 3 History Reader is about George Washington fighting in the American Revolution. He sees a dog lost on the battlefield. Whose dog is it? How will it find its master? Early readers will be surprised to find out what happens in this little-known true story about America’s first president.

Step 3 Readers feature engaging characters in easy-to-follow plots about popular topics. These books are for children who are ready to read on their own.

Honorable Mentions
Worst of Friends: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and the True Story of an American Feud book
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George vs. George: The American Revolution As Seen from Both Sides book
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George Washington's Teeth book
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A Kids' Guide to the American Revolution book
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  1. Worst of Friends: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and the True Story of an American Feud - John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were good friends with very different personalities. But their differing views on how to run the newly created United States turned them into the worst of friends. They each became leaders of opposing political parties, and their rivalry followed them to the White House. Full of both history and humor, this is the story of two of America’s most well-known presidents and how they learned to put their political differences aside for the sake of friendship.

  2. George vs. George: The American Revolution As Seen from Both Sides - There are two sides to every story. Rosalyn Schanzer’s engaging and wonderfully illustrated book brings to life both sides of the American Revolution. The narrative introduces anew the two enemies, both named George: George Washington, the man who freed the American colonies from the British, and George III, the British king who lost them. Two leaders on different sides of the Atlantic, yet with more in common than we sometimes acknowledge. We are lead through their story, and the story of their times, and see both sides of the arguments that divided the colonies from the Kingdom. Was King George a “Royal Brute” as American patriots claimed? Or was he, as others believed, “the father of the people?” Was George Washington a scurrilous traitor, as all the king’s supporters claimed? Or should we remember and celebrate him as “the father of his country?” Who was right? History teaches us that there are two sides to every story. Rosalyn Schanzer’s book is an accessible account of one the most vital periods in American history. It is also a timeless lesson in seeing history from different points of view. The author spent two years researching books, paintings, cartoons, and descriptions of Revolutionary times. She uses art, text, and first-hand accounts to illustrate how history should never be reduced to simplistic conflicts between the “good guys” and the “bad guys.” Her illustrations, and her engaging quote bubbles, bring the Revolution to life again, and allow the characters of the period to speak for themselves. Through its lively text, detailed illustrations, and fully authenticated quotes, George vs. George shines fresh light on both sides of the story of our country’s formative years.

  3. George Washington's Teeth - From battling toothaches while fighting the British, to having rotten teeth removed by his dentists, the Father of His Country suffered all his life with tooth problems. Yet, contrary to popular belief, he never had a set of wooden teeth. Starting at the age of twenty-four, George Washington lost on average a tooth a year, and by the time he was elected president, he had only two left! In this reverentially funny tale written in verse and based on Washington’s letters, diaries, and other historical records, readers will find out what really happened as they follow the trail of lost teeth to complete tooflessness. Illustrated in watercolors with subtle humor by Brock Cole, the main story is followed by a four-page time line featuring reproduced period portraits of Washington.

  4. A Kids' Guide to the American Revolution - Packed with anecdotes, sidebars, quotes, and illustrations, A Kids’ Guide to the American Revolution brings vividly to life the birth of our nation. Introduce young readers to the stakes, challenges, setbacks, and victories involved in the single most important event in our nation’s history, the American Revolution, with this approachable book from Kathleen Krull, a Children’s Book Guild Nonfiction Award winner. Find out what events led our young nation to go to war with Great Britain and how the Declaration of Independence, the document that continues to shape our civil rights, came to be. • Why did the colonists want independence from Great Britain? • What brought on the Boston Tea Party? • How did the Declaration of Independence initially impact women and slaves? • What did Benjamin Franklin do to convince the French to join the revolution? • How was George Washington chosen to lead the new young country? • What elements of the Declaration of Independence continue to be debated today?

Books About Us Presidents and President's Day

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A Picture Book of George Washington
Written by David A. Adler & illustrated by John Wallner and Alexandra Wallner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The life and legacy of our nation’s first president, also known as commander of the Continental Army, husband to Martha, and an avid farmer and equestrian.

Over two hundred years after his death, George Washington remains one of the most studied figures in American history. This clear and concise picture book biography covers the important facts and historical background, complemented by charming illustrations. The text details Washington’s early life as well as the Revolutionary War and his impressive career as leader of the newly formed United States. Young readers will love learning more about the man who was “first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen.” Back matter features a timeline.

Repackaged paperback edition has an elegant new series design!

For almost thirty years, David Adler’s Picture Book Biography series has profiled famous people who changed the world. Colorful, kid-friendly illustrations combine with Adler’s “expert mixtures of facts and personality” (Booklist) to introduce young readers to history through compelling biographies of presidents, heroes, inventors, explorers, and adventurers. These books are ideal for first and second graders interested in history, or who need reliable sources for school book reports.

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Hard Work, but It's Worth It: The Life of Jimmy Carter
Written by Bethany Hegedus & illustrated by Kyung Eun Han
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The first picture book about the inspiring life of humanitarian Jimmy Carter, the thirty-ninth president of the United States and a Nobel Prize winner—from Alabama Spitfire author Bethany Hegedus.

Even before Jimmy Carter became president, he knew the value of hard work. Living on his family’s peanut farm, Jimmy saw how hard work yielded strong results.

At least it did for some people. But growing up in the segregated South, Jimmy also saw firsthand how white people and black people were not treated equally. None of it was right. None of it was fair.

So Jimmy created a list of Good Mental Habits to help him navigate life’s challenges. The list guided his thoughts and actions and helped him fight for change, whether working with civil rights leaders to end racial discrimination in his home state of Georgia, helping to negotiate peace in the Middle East, or building homes for the poor through Habitat for Humanity.

From the statehouse to the White House and beyond, Jimmy has worked to make change for all people, devoting decades to public service and becoming one of the most respected humanitarians of our time. It’s hard work, but it’s worth it.

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So You Want to be President?
Written by Judith St. George & illustrated by David Small
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

This new version of the Caldecott-winning classic by illustrator David Small and author Judith St. George is updated with current facts and new illustrations to include our forty-second president, George W. Bush. There are now three Georges in the catalog of presidential names, a Bush alongside the presidential family tree, and a new face on the endpaper portraiture. Hilariously illustrated by Small, this celebration by St. George shows us the foibles, quirks and humanity of forty-two men who have risen to one of the most powerful positions in the world. Perfect for this election year–and every year!

Honorable Mentions
Abraham Lincoln for Kids book
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Who Was George Washington? book
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Lincoln Tells a Joke book
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Stink: The Incredible Shrinking Kid book
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  1. Abraham Lincoln for Kids - An activity book for young readers tells the story of Abraham Lincoln’s life and details the events of his era, providing a fresh perspective on one of the most beloved American presidents.

  2. Who Was George Washington? - In 1789, George Washington became the first president of the United States. He has been called the father of our country for leading America through its early years. Washington also served in two major wars during his lifetime: the French and Indian War and the American Revolution. With over 100 black-and-white illustrations, Washington’s fascinating story comes to life - revealing the real man, not just the face on the dollar bill!

  3. Lincoln Tells a Joke - Poor Abraham Lincoln! His life was hardly fun at all. A country torn in two by war, citizens who didn’t like him as president, the loss of two young sons, a homely appearance—what could there possibly be to laugh about? And yet he did laugh. Lincoln wasn’t just one of our greatest presidents. He was a comic storyteller, a lover of jokes, someone who could lighten a grim situation with a clever quip. What better way to deal with a hard life than to find the humor in it?

  4. Stink: The Incredible Shrinking Kid - Shrink, shrank, shrunk! Every morning, Judy Moody measures Stink and it’s always the same: three feet, eight inches tall. Stink feels like even the class newt is growing faster than he is. Then, one day, the ruler reads — can it be? — three feet, seven and three quarters inches! Is Stink shrinking? He tries everything to look like he’s growing, but wearing up-and-down stripes and spiking his hair aren’t fooling anyone into thinking he’s taller. If only he could ask James Madison — Stink’s hero, and the shortest person ever to serve as president of the United States. In Stink’s first solo adventure, his special style comes through loud and strong — enhanced by a series of comic strips, drawn by Stink himself, which are sprinkled throughout the book. From “The Adventures of Stink in SHRINK MONSTER” to “The Adventures of Stink in NEWT IN SHINING ARMOR,” these very funny, homespun sagas reflect the familiar voice of a kid who pictures himself with super powers to deal with the travails of everyday life — including the occasional teasing of a bossy big sister!

Books About Us Presidents and Girls And Women

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Parker Looks Up: An Extraordinary Moment
Written by Parker Curry and Jessica Curry & illustrated by Brittany Jackson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

When Parker Curry came face-to-face with Amy Sherald’s transcendent portrait of First Lady Michelle Obama at the National Portrait Gallery, she didn’t just see the First Lady of the United States. She saw a queen—one with dynamic self-assurance, regality, beauty, and truth who captured this young girl’s imagination. When a nearby museum-goer snapped a photo of a mesmerized Parker, it became an internet sensation. Inspired by this visit, Parker, and her mother, Jessica Curry, tell the story of a young girl and her family, whose trip to a museum becomes an extraordinary moment, in a moving picture book. Parker Looks Up follows Parker, along with her baby sister and her mother, and her best friend Gia and Gia’s mother, as they walk the halls of a museum, seeing paintings of everyone and everything from George Washington Carver to Frida Kahlo, exotic flowers to graceful ballerinas. Then, Parker walks by Sherald’s portrait of Michelle Obama…and almost passes it. But she stops…and looks up! Parker saw the possibility and promise, the hopes and dreams of herself in this powerful painting of Michelle Obama. An everyday moment became an extraordinary one…that continues to resonate its power, inspiration, and indelible impact. Because, as Jessica Curry said, “anything is possible regardless of race, class, or gender.” FOREWORD BY ARTIST AMY SHERALD

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Work It, Girl: Michelle Obama: Become a leader like
Written by Caroline Moss & illustrated by Sinem Erkas
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

In this imaginatively illustrated book from the Work It, Girl series, discover how Michelle became an inspirational leader, FLOTUS, lawyer, author, and role model in this true story of her life. Then, learn 10 key lessons from her work you can apply to your own life.

Michelle Obama grew up on the South Side of Chicago in a little bungalow with a close-knit family. She loved going to school, and she knew that, one day, she would use her voice to empower other young girls, just like her. Young Michelle was a brilliant student and wonderful daughter. With hard work and talent, she propelled herself into the universities of Princeton and Harvard. She qualified as a lawyer and life was going smoothly…Then she met a guy named Barack.

Work It, Girl is an empowering series of biographies featuring modern women in the world of work, from designers and musicians to CEOs and scientists. Each of these vibrantly illustrated books tells the story of a remarkable woman in 10 chapters that highlight transformative moments in her life, following the ups and downs that she faced on her road to success. At the end, 10 key lessons show what you can learn from these moments, and self-reflection questions help you apply these lessons to your own life. Brightly colored photo illustrations of 3-D cut paper artwork featuring inspiring quotes from these amazing women bring their stories to vivid life. Learn how to work it as you lay the foundations for your own successful career.

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Isabella: Girl in Charge
Written by Jennifer Fosberry & illustrated by Mike Litwin
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Plucky, purple-haired Isabella, star of the New York Times bestselling picture book series, is back for another adventure! Just how high can a little girl dream? A big event has Isabella ready to leave home at the crack of dawn. But that’s a motion her parents are not likely to pass. After a two-to-one vote, it’s decided that some things need to happen before Isabellacan leave the house-like eating breakfast and brushing her teeth! If her house is going to work like a democracy, Isabella knows what she has to do; call an assembly and campaign her way out the door! Taking inspiration from the women who trail blazed their way onto the political map of America, Isabella celebrates the women who were first to hold their offices. And if Isabella can get her parents out the door, she might just witness the first woman voted into the highest position of all…

Honorable Mentions
Grace for President book
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EVITA book
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  1. Grace for President - “Where are the girls?” When Grace’s teacher reveals that the United States has never had a female president, Grace decides to be the first. And she immediately starts off her political career as a candidate the school’s mock election! Author Kelly DiPucchio not only gives readers a fun introduction to the American electoral system, but also teaches them the value of hard work, courage, and independent thought—and offers an inspiring example of how to choose our leaders.

  2. EVITA - Introducing Spanish/English bilingualism, Lil’ Libros encourage parents to read to their children at the earliest age—focusing on subjects they are familiar with, while making it fun and rewarding for both parent and child.

Books About Us Presidents and 18th Century

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Meet George Washington
Written by Patricia A. Pingry & illustrated by Stephanie Britt
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

A biography of the nation’s first president, including his youth in Virginia, his army career, and his leadership of the newly formed United States of America.

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The Many Faces of George Washington: Remaking a Presidential Icon (Exceptional Social Studies Titles for Intermediate Grades)
Written & illustrated by Carla Killough McClafferty
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

“No picture accurately resembled him in the minute traits of his person . . . there was an expression of his face that no painter had succeeded in taking.”―London’s New Monthly Magazine in 1790

George Washington’s face has been painted, printed, and engraved more than a billion times since his birth in 1732. And yet even in his lifetime, no picture seemed to capture the likeness of the man who is now the most iconic of all our presidents. Worse still, people today often see this founding father as the “old and grumpy” Washington on the dollar bill.

In 2005 a team of historians, scientists, and artisans at Mount Vernon set out to change the image of our first president. They studied paintings and sculptures, pored over Washington’s letters to his tailors and noted other people’s comments about his appearance, even closely examined the many sets of dentures that had been created for Washington. Researchers tapped into skills as diverse as 18th-century leatherworking and cutting-edge computer programming to assemble truer likenesses. Their painstaking research and exacting processes helped create three full-body representations of Washington as he was at key moments in his life. And all along the way, the team gained new insight into a man who was anything but “old and grumpy.” Join award-winning author Carla Killough McClafferty as she unveils the statues of the three Georges and rediscovers the man who became the face of a new nation.

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George Washington: An American Life
Written by Laurie Calkhoven
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 10-18

“First in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen”—and first in the minds of schoolchildren, who learn about George Washington as soon as they begin studying American history. From Washington’s Virginia childhood, through his days as a soldier and general, to his inauguration as the first President of the brand-new United States, and into retirement, this biography captures the full breadth and achievements of his life. It covers both the personal and the private, reveals his views on everything from governmental power to the abolition of slavery, and separates fascinating truth from well-worn legend—including that infamous, but false, tale about chopping down the cherry tree.

Honorable Mentions
George Did It book
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Meet George Washington book
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George Washington -- Soldier, Hero, President book
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  1. George Did It - Everyone wanted George Washington to be the president. He was responsible, led the army in a fight against the British, and helped write the Constitution. But being the president is a very important job, and George was too nervous. So, to everyone’s surprise, he said no! However, George had many supporters, and with the help of the cheering crowds and loyal advisers and dignitaries, George realized that he didn’t have time to think about how nervous he was, he just had to do his job. With little-known facts and a bit of humor, Suzanne Tripp Jurmain gives readers a glimpse into the more personal side of the first president of the United States.

  2. Meet George Washington - George Washington grew up in the English colony of Virginia. He was tall and strong, fair in judgment, and respected by his friends as a good leader. As he grew older, George saw how England took advantage of the American colonies—and he didn’t like it. When the colonies declared their independence, George was chosen to lead their army as its general. And when the colonies won their freedom, George was elected to lead the new nation as its first president.

  3. George Washington -- Soldier, Hero, President - This biography of one of the most famous and recognizable American presidents mark DK’s commitment to bringing US history-based biographies to the DK Readers series. In George Washington, the young reader will learn about our first president’s childhood, his life as a farmer, statesman, general, and his days as president. The 48-page Level 3 books, designed for children who can read on their own, contain more complex sentence structure and more detail. Young readers will devour these kid-friendly titles, which cover high-interest topics such as sharks, and the Bermuda Triangle, as well as classics like Aladdin. Information boxes highlight historical references, trivia, pronunciation, and other facts about words and names mentioned. Averaging 2,400 to 2,800 words, these books offer a 50/50 picture-to-text ratio. The Dorling Kindersley Readers combine an enticing visual layout with high-interest, easy-to-read stories to captivate and delight young bookworms who are just getting started. Written by leading children’s authors and compiled in consultation with literacy experts, these engaging books build reader confidence along with a lifelong appreciation for nonfiction, classic stories, and biographies. There is a DK Reader to interest every child at every level, from preschool to grade 4.

Books About Us Presidents and Politics

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I Am Abraham Lincoln
Written by Brad Meltzer & illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Follows Abraham Lincoln from his childhood to the presidency, showing how he spoke up about fairness and eventually led the country to abolish slavery.

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Little Guides to Great Lives: Nelson Mandela
Written by Isabel Thomas & illustrated by Hannah Warren
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-11

Anti-apartheid revolutionary, politician, and philanthropist, Nelson Mandela’s journey from political prisoner to president of South Africa is an incredible tale of triumph in the face of adversity. 2018 marks a hundred years since his birth.

From artists to aviators and scientists to revolutionaries, Little Guides to Great Lives is a brand new series of small-format guides introducing children to the most inspirational figures from history in a fun, accessible way. Launching with Leonardo da Vinci, Marie Curie, Nelson Mandela, and Amelia Earhart, Little Guides to Great Lives tells the stories of the most amazing people from all over the world and across history, with full-color illustrations and fresh design to bring their incredible stories to life.

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Mayor Pete
Written by Rob Sanders & illustrated by Levi Hastings
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Get to know Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a first-of-his-kind candidate running for a one-of-a-kind office, in Rob Sanders’ inspiring picture book biography, featuring illustrations by Levi Hastings.

When Pete Buttigieg announced he was running for president, he became the first openly gay candidate to run for the Democratic party’s presidential nomination and the first millennial ever to pursue the office. But before the nation knew him as “Mayor Pete,” he was a boy growing up in a Rust Belt town, a kid who dreamed of being an astronaut, and a high schooler who wondered about a life of public service. Without a doubt, no one could have imagined who Peter Paul Montgomery Buttigieg, the boy who lived in a two-story house on College Street, would become.

Through victories and defeats, and the changes that the seasons bring, the young boy from South Bend grew into a man devoted to helping others. Mayor Pete: The Story of Pete Buttigieg celebrates the life of an American who dared to be the first and who imagined a better world for everyone.

A Who Did It First? Book

Honorable Mentions
Who Was Nelson Mandela? book
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Grandad Mandela book
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Goodnight Bush: A Parody book
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I am Kind book
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  1. Who Was Nelson Mandela? - Describes the life of the South African president and revolutionary, from his childhood and his work as a peaceful protestor to his twenty-seven-year imprisonment, his election as president, and his work to end apartheid in South Africa.

  2. Grandad Mandela - Two great-grandchildren ask their grandmother 15 questions about the man they remember as Grandad, and the world remembers as Nelson Mandela, the global icon of peace and forgiveness who spent 27 years in prison. They learn that he was a freedom fighter who put down his weapons for the sake of peace, and who then became the President of South Africa and a Nobel Peace Prize-winner, and realise that they can continue his legacy in the world today. Seen through a child’s perspective, and authored jointly by his great-grandchildren and daughter, this amazing story is told as never before to celebrate what would have been Nelson’s Mandela 100th birthday.

  3. Goodnight Bush: A Parody - A brilliant parody of the children’s classic Goodnight Moon, built around the coming end of the worst presidency ever. Goodnight Bush: An Unauthorized Parody is a hilarious and poignant visual requiem for the Bush administration. In it we see a childlike George W. Bush tucked safely away in the confines of his own room with all of the toys he’s willfully destroyed, abused, or defaced. Complete with a quiet Dick Cheney whispering “hush,” this bedtime story lets us finally say goodnight to the disaster that was the last eight years.

  4. I am Kind - This friendly, fun biography series focuses on the traits that made our heroes great—the traits that kids can aspire to in order to live heroically themselves. In this new board book format, the very youngest readers can learn about one of America’s icons in the series’s signature lively, conversational style. The short text focuses on drawing inspiration from these iconic heroes, and includes an interactive element and factual tidbits that young kids will be able to connect with. This volume tells the story of Abraham Lincoln, America’s sixteenth president.

Want to see books about politics?

Books About Us Presidents and Historical Figures

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Nelson Mandela
Written & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

One day when Nelson Mandela was nine years old, his father died and he was sent from his village to a school far away from home, to another part of South Africa. In Johannesburg, the country’s capital, Mandela saw fellow Africans who were poor and powerless. He decided then that he would work to protect them. When the government began to keep people apart based on the color of their skin, Mandela spoke out against the law and vowed to fight hard in order to make his country a place that belonged to all South Africans. Kadir Nelson tells the story of Mandela, a global icon, in poignant verse and glorious illustrations. It is the story of a young boy’s determination to change South Africa and of the struggles of a man who eventually became the president of his country by believing in equality for people of all colors. Readers will be inspired by Mandela’s triumph and his lifelong quest to create a more just world.

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Abraham Lincoln
Written by Ingri D'Aulaire & illustrated by Edgar Parin D'Aulaire
picture book
Recommend Ages: 9-11

Not since 1957 have d’Aulaire fans been able to enjoy the beauty of the stone lithographic work that earned these beloved author-artists the prestigious Caldecott Medal in 1940. Now, in honor of the 75th Anniversary of their Caldecott Medal award, and marking a century and a half of emancipation, readers young and old will delight in this biography of America’s most beloved President. Beautiful Feet Books worked with Timothy Young, curator of Beinecke Rare Books and Manuscript Collection at Yale University Library, to restore the original art through brand new reproductions of the 1939 lithographic proofs. Abraham Lincoln continues to stand as America’s most beloved President. Of our nation’s historical icons, Lincoln is the quintessential embodiment of American possibility in his mythic-like rise from rail-splitter to Chief Executive and Emancipator of the oppressed. The admiration felt by Americans for Lincoln’s humble integrity, his noble statesmanship, and his keen sense of justice, is beautifully captured in the d’Aulaires’ art and prose.

From Publishers Weekly, 2015: “Beautiful Feet Books has made minor modifications to the original art and text to reflect contemporary views about race politics and to reflect historical accuracy, citing two instances in the book, including one of a Native American cowering behind Lincoln, which they fixed to have him standing erect. Another is when Lincoln is walking down the streets, with freed slaves bowing down to him. The original text didn’t mention that he didn’t want them bowing down to him,” said Berg. “The original didn’t say that he actually shook hands with them. So we altered his face and made him shake hands with the former slaves and added in what he actually said in the historical record, which was, ‘Do not kneel to me.’” In the introduction to the 75th-anniversary edition, curator Young calls Abraham Lincoln a prime example of what was produced during what many people call the golden age of the American picture book. Young highlights the amount of detailed work that went into the making of the book and wants readers to remember that even the most simple books for children are never simply made.

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Lincoln and Kennedy
Written & illustrated by Gene Barretta
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

President Abraham Lincoln grew up in a one-room log cabin. President John F. Kennedy was raised in the lap of luxury. One was a Republican and one a Democrat. They lived and served a hundred years apart. Yet they had a number of things in common. Some were coincidental: having seven letters in their last names. Some were monumental: Lincoln’s support for the abolitionist movement and Kennedy’s support for the civil rights movement. They both lost a son while in office. And, of course, both were assassinated. In this illuminating book, Gene Barretta offers an insightful portrait of two of our country’s most famous presidents.

Honorable Mentions
Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America (Coretta Scott King Award - Author Winner Title(s)) book
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Epic Fails: Not So Great Presidents book
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Cheer Up, Ben Franklin! book
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  1. Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America (Coretta Scott King Award - Author Winner Title(s)) - HAND IN HAND presents the stories of ten men from different eras in American history, organized chronologically to provide a scope from slavery to the modern day. The stories are accessible, fully-drawn narratives offering the subjects’ childhood influences, the time and place in which they lived, their accomplishments and motivations, and the legacies they left for future generations as links in the “freedom chain.” This book will be the definitive family volume on the subject, punctuated with dynamic full color portraits and spot illustrations by two-time Caldecott Honor winner and multiple Coretta Scott King Book Award recipient Brian Pinkney. Backmatter includes a civil rights timeline, sources, and further reading.

  2. Epic Fails: Not So Great Presidents - From heroic George Washington to the dastardly Richard Nixon, the oval office has been occupied by larger-than-life personalities since 1789. The position comes with enormous power and responsibility, and every American president thus far has managed to achieve great things. However, the President of the United States is only human―and oftentimes far from perfect. While some men suffered through only minor mishaps during their time in office, others are famously remembered for leaving behind much bigger messes. In the third installment of the Epic Fails series, authors Erik Slader and Ben Thompson, and artist Tim Foley, take readers on another hilarious ride, exploring the lives, legacies, and failures of some of America’s commanders in chief.

  3. Cheer Up, Ben Franklin! - Can this Founding Father find a friend? Introducing a new board-book series perfect for even the youngest historian! Ben Franklin is sad.No one has time to fly kites with him today.Betsy Ross is busy sewing a flag.Alexander Hamilton is busy counting money…Will things change for Ben when he reaches Independence Hall?The first volume of this new board-book series takes a tongue-in-cheek look at American history to introduce the youngest historians to some of the most prominent characters during our nation’s exciting beginning. Readers will love the amusing story, and biographies in the back of the book will ensure they’ll learn even more along the way.

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