The informational text proves why Daniel Boone is synonymous with the pioneer spirit.

A PICTURE BOOK OF DANIEL BOONE

From the Picture Book Biographies series

Adler, collaborating with his son, expands his extensive repertoire of picture-book biographies of famous Americans with this worthy addition featuring Daniel Boone.

Beginning with the frontiersman’s birth in 1734 to Quakers who left England and settled in Pennsylvania for religious freedom, the straightforward text follows the same format as the authors’ previous biographies. Sprinkled with documented quotes, double-page spreads introduce specific events in Boone’s life. Descriptions of his curiosity in childhood, his job as a wagon driver for the British during the French and Indian War, and his constant search for better hunting grounds lead up to his establishment of a settlement in Kentucky (then still part of Virginia) and blazing the route from Virginia to Kentucky that came to be called the Wilderness Trail. The authors heighten the perils by including several Shawnee Indian attacks Boone and his family encountered, but they do not balance the topic by indicating why the Native Americans felt threatened. Complemented by realistic illustrations that depict the lushness of unexplored land and an attention to the details of soldiers’, settlers’ and Native Americans’ clothing and homes, the biography is still a good source for browsing and school reports. Appended lists of important dates and related websites, as well as authors’ notes, will assist with the latter.

The informational text proves why Daniel Boone is synonymous with the pioneer spirit. (Picture book/biography. 4-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 15, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-8234-2748-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: June 26, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 2013

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A lyrical coming-of-age story in picture-book form that begs to be shared.

IMAGINE

Former Poet Laureate Herrera encourages his young readers to imagine all they might be in his new picture book.

Herrera’s free verse tells his own story, starting as a young boy who loves the plants and animals he finds outdoors in the California fields and is then thrust into the barren, concrete city. In the city he begins to learn to read and write, learning English and discovering a love for words and the way ink flows “like tiny rivers” across the page as he applies pen to paper. Words soon become sentences, poems, lyrics, and a means of escape. This love of the word ultimately leads him to make writing his vocation and to become the first Chicano Poet Laureate of the United States, an honor Herrera received in 2015. Through this story of hardship to success, expressed in a series of conditional statements that all begin “If I,” Herrera implores his readers to “imagine what you could do.” Castillo’s ink and foam monoprint illustrations are a tender accompaniment to Herrera’s verse, the black lines of her illustrations flowing across the page in rhythm with the author’s poetry. Together this makes for a charming read-aloud for groups or a child snuggled in a lap.

A lyrical coming-of-age story in picture-book form that begs to be shared. (Picture book/memoir. 4-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 2, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-7636-9052-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Aug. 27, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2018

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A resplendent masterpiece.

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DREAMERS

Based on her experience of leaving Mexico for the United States, Morales’ latest offers an immigrant’s tale steeped in hope, dreams, and love.

This story begins with a union between mother and son, with arms outstretched in the midst of a new beginning. Soon after, mother and son step on a bridge, expansive “like the universe,” to cross to the other side, to become immigrants. An ethereal city appears, enfolded in fog. The brown-skinned woman and her child walk through this strange new land, unwilling to speak, unaccustomed to “words unlike those of our ancestors.” But soon their journey takes them to the most marvelous of places: the library. In a series of stunning double-page spreads, Morales fully captures the sheer bliss of discovery as their imaginations take flight. The vibrant, surreal mixed-media artwork, including Mexican fabric, metal sheets, “the comal where I grill my quesadillas,” childhood drawings, and leaves and plants, represents a spectacular culmination of the author’s work thus far. Presented in both English and Spanish editions (the latter in Teresa Mlawer’s translation), equal in evocative language, the text moves with purpose. No word is unnecessary, each a deliberate steppingstone onto the next. Details in the art provide cultural markers specific to the U.S., but the story ultimately belongs to one immigrant mother and her son. Thanks to books and stories (some of her favorites are appended), the pair find their voices as “soñadores of the world.”

A resplendent masterpiece. (author’s note) (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: Sept. 4, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-8234-4055-9

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Neal Porter/Holiday House

Review Posted Online: Aug. 1, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2018

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