An easily accessible biography of a notable 20th-century American.

NEIL ARMSTRONG

From the Little People, BIG DREAMS series

Fame and accomplishment come easily to an astronaut.

During a childhood visit with his father to an airfield full of propeller planes, Armstrong was inspired. He knew that he wanted to fly and earned his pilot’s license at age 16. He fought during the Korean War, earning three Air Medals, and then became a test pilot and joined NASA, where he was selected for the first moon mission. In July 1969, he became the first person to walk on the surface of the moon. In July 1969, he became the first person to walk on the surface of the moon (in a reference to Armstrong's famous quote, the text reads, “It was one small step for a man but a giant leap for humankind”). The author concludes her brief, positive highlights of Armstrong’s life with an overview of the worldwide fame that followed the mission. All the faces in the colorful illustrations feature big smiles with the exception of a scene in the spacecraft when a technical glitch causes two astronauts to grimace. The people depicted are mostly light-skinned, though one illustration shows three brown-skinned women walking together at NASA headquarters and another shows a brown-skinned family watching the moon landing on TV. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

An easily accessible biography of a notable 20th-century American. (photos, biographical information) (Picture-book biography. 5-8)

Pub Date: July 12, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-7112-7103-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Frances Lincoln

Review Posted Online: May 11, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2022

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Self-serving to be sure but also chock-full of worthy values and sentiments.

SUPERHEROES ARE EVERYWHERE

The junior senator from California introduces family and friends as everyday superheroes.

The endpapers are covered with cascades of, mostly, early childhood snapshots (“This is me contemplating the future”—caregivers of toddlers will recognize that abstracted look). In between, Harris introduces heroes in her life who have shaped her character: her mom and dad, whose superpowers were, respectively, to make her feel special and brave; an older neighbor known for her kindness; grandparents in India and Jamaica who “[stood] up for what’s right” (albeit in unspecified ways); other relatives and a teacher who opened her awareness to a wider world; and finally iconic figures such as Thurgood Marshall and Constance Baker Motley who “protected people by using the power of words and ideas” and whose examples inspired her to become a lawyer. “Heroes are…YOU!” she concludes, closing with a bulleted Hero Code and a timeline of her legal and political career that ends with her 2017 swearing-in as senator. In group scenes, some of the figures in the bright, simplistic digital illustrations have Asian features, some are in wheelchairs, nearly all are people of color. Almost all are smiling or grinning. Roe provides everyone identified as a role model with a cape and poses the author, who is seen at different ages wearing an identifying heart pin or decoration, next to each.

Self-serving to be sure but also chock-full of worthy values and sentiments. (Picture book/memoir. 5-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 8, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-984837-49-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Jan. 8, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Sage, soothing ideas for a busy, loud, sometimes-divisive world.

GRANDMA'S GARDENS

In an inviting picture book, Chelsea and Hillary Clinton share personal revelations on how gardening with a grandmother, a mother, and children shapes and nurtures a love and respect for nature, beauty, and a general philosophy for life.

Grandma Dorothy, the former senator, secretary of state, and presidential candidate’s mother, loved gardens, appreciating the multiple benefits they yielded for herself and her family. The Clinton women reminisce about their beloved forebear and all she taught them in a color-coded, alternating text, blue for Chelsea and green for Hillary. Via brief yet explicit remembrances, they share what they learned, observed, and most of all enjoyed in gardens with her. Each double-page spread culminates in a declarative statement set in italicized red text invoking Dorothy’s wise words. Gardens can be many things: places for celebration, discovery and learning, vehicles for teaching responsibility in creating beauty, home to wildlife large and small, a place to share stories and develop memories. Though operating from very personal experience rooted in class privilege, the mother-daughter duo mostly succeeds in imparting a universally significant message: Whether visiting a public garden or working in the backyard, generations can cultivate a lasting bond. Lemniscates uses an appropriately floral palette to evoke the gardens explored by these three white women. A Spanish edition, Los jardines de la abuela, publishes simultaneously; Teresa Mlawer’s translation is fluid and pleasing, in at least one case improving on the original.

Sage, soothing ideas for a busy, loud, sometimes-divisive world. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: March 31, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-11535-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Philomel

Review Posted Online: Dec. 8, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2020

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more