Books by Robert Burleigh

ZOOM! ZOOM! by Robert Burleigh
Released: Feb. 4, 2014

"Young vehicle-lovers will rev their engines for more. (Picture book. 2-6)"
An energetic, multivehicle ride through a bustling city day. Read full book review >
LOOK UP! by Robert Burleigh
Released: Feb. 19, 2013

"An artful and inspiring effort. (quotations, afterword, author's note, glossary, Internet resources, bibliography) (Picture book/biography. 7-9)"
Burleigh weaves imagination and information to sketch the life of a female scientist and illuminate her achievements. Read full book review >
IF YOU SPENT A DAY WITH THOREAU AT WALDEN POND by Robert Burleigh
Released: Oct. 16, 2012

"A fine introduction to the value of Thoreau and the natural world. (Picture book. 4-9)"
What would it be like to spend a day with Henry David Thoreau, observing and appreciating nature? Read full book review >
FLIGHT OF THE LAST DRAGON by Robert Burleigh
Released: Oct. 11, 2012

"A title with appeal for readers interested in dragons, this picture book doesn't quite live up to other offerings with similar themes. (Picture book. 3-6)"
The high-interest topic of this picture book about "the last dragon" fails to realize its full potential. Read full book review >
HIT THE ROAD, JACK by Robert Burleigh
Released: Sept. 1, 2012

"Appropriately for the audience, this charmer invokes the man's spirit rather than his biography, effectively communicating the excitement of the road he held so dear. (author's note) (Picture book. 4-8)"
What could have been straight nonfiction takes on a fanciful air when Jack Kerouac is rendered more jack rabbit than man. Read full book review >
GEORGE BELLOWS by Robert Burleigh
Released: June 1, 2012

"A fine portrait of an artist not on everyone's radar but whose work can be readily understood and appreciated by youngsters. (list of museums exhibiting Bellows' work, source notes, bibliography, illustration credits, index) (Biography. 8-12)"
That American painter George Bellows (1882-1925) packed a punch is shown to dramatic effect in this admiring introduction to his life and work. Read full book review >
THE ADVENTURES OF MARK TWAIN BY HUCKLEBERRY FINN by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: March 8, 2011

"It's a breezy homage to Twain's life and literary world that will please some, aggravate some and utterly baffle others. (Picture book/biography. 10 & up)"
"Sam was born excited. He did stuff. Read full book review >
NIGHT FLIGHT by Robert Burleigh
FICTION
Released: Feb. 22, 2011

"An afterword provides a brief account of Earhart's life, giving some necessary context to the episode dramatized in the main text. (technical note, bibliography, selected quotes) (Picture book/biography. 5-10)"
This gorgeous book presents a lyrical account of Amelia Earhart's 1932 solo transatlantic flight, taking readers from the runway at Harbour Grace, Newfoundland, at 7:12 p.m., through an initially calm and eventually harrowing flight in which weather and equipment failure almost condemn Amelia's small craft to the dark waters of the Atlantic, to daybreak and a safe landing in a pasture in Ireland. Read full book review >
GOOD-BYE, SHEEPIE by Robert Burleigh
ANIMALS
Released: April 1, 2010

"Touching but ultimately lacking. (Picture book. 4-8)"
The death of a boy's beloved sheepdog is the topic of Burleigh's latest. Read full book review >
CLANG! CLANG! BEEP! BEEP! by Robert Burleigh
FICTION
Released: May 5, 2009

"A vivid sliver of city life. (Picture book. 3-7)"
Using rhymed couplets of only four or five words, Burleigh makes a poem of the noises any child might hear in an urban environment: the alarm clock, the subway, traffic, demolition. Read full book review >
ONE GIANT LEAP by Robert Burleigh
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2009

"Taken together, text and illustrations make this one to skip over in a season chock-full of moon landings. (Informational picture book. 6-10)"
With customarily heightened language, Burleigh's lengthy free-verse poem describes the moments between the landing of the Eagle on the lunar surface and the Columbia's return to "fragile, beautiful home." Read full book review >
FLY, CHER AMI, FLY! by Robert Burleigh
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2008

"Sleep, Cher Ami, sleep!" (Picture book. 5-9)"
During World War I, the U.S. Army relied on a flock of 600 carrier pigeons to send messages back to headquarters from troops in the field, and one, Cher Ami, became famous for saving the "Lost Battalion," which had been trapped behind enemy lines. Read full book review >
ABRAHAM LINCOLN COMES HOME by Robert Burleigh
Released: Aug. 1, 2008

"The contemplative story is supported by an afterword and "interesting facts" about the train's journey through the grieving nation. (notes, resources) (Picture book. 7-10)"
Two picture-book veterans choose a unique way of demonstrating President Lincoln's impact upon the people of the United States. Read full book review >
NAPOLEON by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: June 1, 2007

"A fine introduction to Napoleon and his times. (bibliography, picture credits) (Nonfiction. 8-12)"
In his author's note, Burleigh discusses the fascinating unanswered questions about Napoleon, even after countless books and articles have been written about him. Read full book review >
STEALING HOME by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: Jan. 9, 2007

"It's unfortunate that the high level of writing and art is lessened by design choices that do not consider the needs of the reader, because the story is terrific. (Picture book. 7-10)"
During a World Series game in 1955, Jackie Robinson electrified the crowd and astonished the baseball world by successfully stealing home. Read full book review >
TIGER OF THE SNOWS by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: June 1, 2006

"A striking, inspiring tribute. (afterword) (Picture book/poetry. 7-10)"
A gorgeously illustrated praise-song illuminates the yearnings and achievement of Tenzing Norgay, recently recovered from history as the Nepalese Sherpa who, along with Sir Edmund Hillary, conquered Mount Everest in 1953. Read full book review >
PAUL CÉZANNE by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: March 1, 2006

"An attractive, worthy contribution. (glossary, bibliography, author's note) (Nonfiction. 9-12)"
Both biography and art criticism, this exploration of Cézanne features well-reproduced paintings, mostly excellent design and text that's partly savvy and partly incomplete. Read full book review >
PLAY BALL! by Jorge Posada
FAMILY AND GROWING UP
Released: March 1, 2006

"Young fans of baseball, especially of Posada and the New York Yankees, will gain insight into the making of a major leaguer, and maybe some inspiration as well. (Picture book. 6-10)"
Growing up in Puerto Rico, Jorge lives and breathes baseball. Read full book review >
LANGSTON’S TRAIN RIDE by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: Oct. 1, 2004

"Unfortunately, this offering does its subject a grievous injustice. (Picture book/nonfiction. 6-9)"
Stunning illustrations cannot rescue a deeply flawed text that purports to capture Langston Hughes's excitement upon writing "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" and its subsequent publication. Read full book review >
BY MY BROTHER’S SIDE by Tiki Barber
BIOGRAPHY
Released: Sept. 1, 2004

"A great gift for brothers, too. (Picture book. 5-8)"
The Barber twins not only play professional football for the NFL, they're also both great enough to be stars. Read full book review >
AMERICAN MOMENTS by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: June 1, 2004

"More well-meaning propaganda than real nonfiction. (Nonfiction. 6-10)"
From October 1621 (the first Thanksgiving) to October 2001 (a vigil commemorating 9/11), 18 scenes from US history are presented in clay tableaux. Read full book review >
SEURAT AND LA GRANDE JATTE by Robert Burleigh
BIOGRAPHY
Released: May 1, 2004

"Useful only to those who will actually be standing in front of the painting—along with the hundreds of others in the room. (Timeline, author's note, glossary, selected bibliography, illustration credits, acknowledgements) (Nonfiction. 12+)"
Publishing in connection with a June exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago devoted exclusively to Seurat's most famous painting, Burleigh does his best to make a detailed examination of the work—its subject, style, and the methods of its creator—interesting to a young audience. Read full book review >
INTO THE WOODS by Robert Burleigh
ADVENTURE
Released: Feb. 1, 2003

"The two are quite compatible in this feast for bird lovers. (author's note) (Picture book. 6-12)"
A tribute to the naturalist and artist John J. Audubon pairs verse by the author with quotations from Audubon's journals. Read full book review >
THE SECRET OF THE GREAT HOUDINI by Robert Burleigh
FANTASY
Released: July 1, 2002

"Houdini is a fascinating figure for all ages; this snapshot of one incredible feat and its witnesses will introduce children to the "secret" of his success and may spur further exploration, and inspiration. (afterword) (Picture book. 7-10)"
Those expecting an easy answer to what Houdini's secret really was may be disappointed, but the truth is ultimately more satisfying: he worked incredibly hard, practiced, and believed in his ability. Read full book review >
I LOVE GOING THROUGH THIS BOOK by Robert Burleigh
FICTION
Released: June 1, 2001

"Not likely. (Picture book. 4-8)"
A celebration of book-qua-book from Burleigh (Lookin' for Bird in the Big City, p. 582, etc.). Read full book review >
LOOKIN’ FOR  BIRD IN THE BIG CITY by Robert Burleigh
FICTION
Released: May 1, 2001

"Best read aloud by a storyteller with jazz inside, but sure to inspire more music. (Picture book. 5-9)"
Burleigh limns a fictionalized account of the very young Miles Davis coming to New York City with his trumpet, seeking Charlie "Bird" Parker and his saxophone. Read full book review >
PANDORA by Robert Burleigh
FAIRY TALES, FOLKTALES AND MYTHS
Released: May 1, 2001

"Very different in tone and effect from the lyrical Dora's Box (1998), this is darker but still accessible, though it may have trouble finding its audience because of its mature treatment. (cast of characters) (Picture book/nonfiction. 6-9)"
The myth of Pandora is told in compelling free verse with striking, colored-pencil and watercolor illustrations. Read full book review >
GOAL by Robert Burleigh
POETRY
Released: March 1, 2001

"A real winner. (Picture book. 6-9)"
Burleigh uses the familiar game of soccer to demonstrate the power of teamwork to achieve success. Read full book review >
CHOCOLATE by Robert Burleigh
FOOD & COOKING
Released: March 1, 2001

"A well-conceived and executed work on a subject of great interest. (Nonfiction. 8-12)"
Chocolate is more than just the favorite flavor of millions of people. Read full book review >
MESSENGER, MESSENGER by Robert Burleigh
FICTION
Released: June 1, 2000

"Children will accept and appreciate the rhythm of a life they glimpse every day. (Picture book. 4-7)"
In propulsive rhymed couplets, Burleigh (Hercules, 1999, etc.) tells a day in the life of a bicycle messenger in a city inspired by Chicago. Read full book review >
HERCULES by Robert Burleigh
Released: Aug. 1, 1999

"His textured, colored-pencil drawings emulate friezes, highlighting the chiseled features of Hercules in all his statuesque glory and heroism. (Picture book/folklore. 6-9)"
He kills the savage lion; he destroys the dreaded, nine-headed hydra; he captures the guarded golden apples from the end of the earth. Read full book review >
IT'S FUNNY WHERE BEN'S TRAIN TAKES HIM by Robert Burleigh
Released: March 1, 1999

"Other children have taken similar journeys in many books, but the art provides an unusually clear evocation of the way imagination, anchored in reality, can bring the whole world right into the bedroom. (Picture book. 5-7)"
Pajama-clad Ben draws a train and steps on board, beginning a ride that takes him "Past green hills/Where horses browse,/An old farm house./A field of cows./And a whir and a whistle,/That seem to be saying,/To go anywhere/Is better than staying." Read full book review >
HOME RUN by Robert Burleigh
Released: Aug. 1, 1998

Burleigh (Hoops, 1998) takes the same over-the-top tone in paying tribute to one of the country's most famous athletes: "He is the Babe. Read full book review >
BLACK WHITENESS by Robert Burleigh
ADVENTURE
Released: March 1, 1998

"While Byrd ultimately survived an illness to welcome a relief crew, his story is severe, often depressing, and always riveting. (Picture book/nonfiction. 7-11)"
 Burleigh (Hoops, p. 1386, etc.) retells Admiral Richard Byrd's successful six-month, one-man Antarctic encampment in a picture book aimed at an older audience. Read full book review >
HOOPS by Robert Burleigh
POETRY
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"The attempt to capture the game in words is certainly in earnest; the outstanding art merits better. (Picture book. 10+)"
 Clumsy writing mars this otherwise breathless, evocative tribute to top-speed playground b-ball. Read full book review >
FLIGHT by Robert Burleigh
THINGS THAT GO
Released: Sept. 25, 1991

"A book that brings new life to one of the stories of the century. (Nonfiction/Picture book. 4-11)*justify no*"
 Even the awkward style here (a choppy, breathless tone is exacerbated by the relentless use of fragments and single- sentence paragraphs) conveys the excitement of Lindbergh's historic flight at the age of 25, but Wimmer's double-spread paintings steal the show: from the first glimpse of the aircraft through an arch formed by the pilot's determined-looking legs, they capture the feel of the cabin, the beauty of sea and sky, the drama of the nighttime arrival—all in impressionistic paintings peopled with realistic portraits, most notably of the weary hero appealingly sprawled in sleep on the last page. Read full book review >