Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday - new biographies... the boys 6.07.17

Every Wednesday I join Alyson Beecher from kidlitfrenzy and other
kidlit bloggers to share wonderful nonfiction picture books.
The intention of today's blog post is to give professionals that work in the
education field new nonfiction reading material and ideas to use 
with students to promote a love of reading nonfiction materials.

There always seems to be a plethora of picture book biographies.  Here are some of the new ones that have jumped from the stacks.

John Ronald's Dragons by Caroline McAlister
John Ronald's Dragons: The Story of J.R.R. Tolkien
written by Caroline McAlister
illustrated by Eliza Wheeler
As a fan of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy, I was excited to hear about this book.  I know more about Peter Jackson (director of TLofR movies) than the author of the books.  It was very interesting to me, especially since it seemed that most details were new to me.  However, I'm wondering how much this book will appeal to young readers?  If they've seen the movies, they will probably enjoy it.  If not, I'm guessing it will appeal to readers who have an interest in dragons, fantasy, imagination....  
I think the illustrations were so well done by Wheeler!
Fascinating facts, but will be interested in hearing what young readers think.

John Deere, That’s Who! by Tracy Nelson Maurer
John Deere, Tha's Who!
written by Tracy Nelson Maurer
illustrated by Tim Zeltner
Driving from the Chicago suburbs through the cornfields of Illinois in order to get to school (Illinois State University), I would drive past a John Deere factory.  The name is synonymous with green tractors.  But other than that, I really didn't know much about the man.  It was interesting to read how he got to Illinois and that he is credited with building a better plow for midwest soil (I like how it is described in the book, but here's a quick description - it's clay).  I always just assumed he built tractors!  Misconception is cleared up, thanks to this book!

The William Hoy Story by Nancy Churnin
The William Hoy Story 
written by Nancy Churnin
illustrated by Jez Tuya
This book was published last year but finally made its way to my library as a 2018 IL Monarch Award nominee.  I'm glad it did because it really is an inspirational story.  Would be fun to read every April around Opening Day time.  I had no idea that many of the calls made in baseball - the actual physical motion of them - were because of this man, William Hoy, who was a deaf player!

Stand Up and Sing! by Susanna Reich
Stand Up and Sing! Pete Seeger, Folk Music and the Path to Justice
written by Susanna Reich
illustrated by Adam Gustavson
I know of Pete Seeger and his music but I didn't really know about the man and what he did with his music.  Good picture book biography to introduce young readers to Pete.

I'll be back in a couple of weeks to spotlight picture book biographies that are all about the girls!


  1. I loved the Tolkien and the Seeger books, have both! I sent a link about John Deere to a friend whose husband collects all things John Deere, but still need to read it and the one about William Hoy. I love these bios coming out. It's wonderful learning when there isn't time to read longer biographies. Thanks, Michele!

  2. We have lived in the country for the past five years, and I've been struck by how few books reflect the everyday life of country kids. I'm excited to read the John Deere biography!

  3. I loved the William Hoy story, and I just won a copy of the Pete Seeger book--looking forward to reading it!