Saturday, July 25, 2015

Kid Konnection: I am Lucille Ball

Every Saturday, I host a feature called Kid Konnection -- a regular weekend feature about anything related to children's books. This week, I'm going to share with you an adorable and educational picture book by a famous thriller writer.

Summary: “Kids always search for heroes, so we might as well have a say in it,” Brad Meltzer realized, and so he envisioned this friendly, fun approach to biography—for his own kids, and for yours. Each book tells the story of one of America’s icons in a vivacious, conversational way that works well for the youngest nonfiction readers, those who aren’t quite ready for the Who Was biography series. Each book focuses on a particular character trait that made that role model heroic. For example, Lucille Ball could make any situation funny. By making people around the world laugh, she proved that humor can take on anything.

This engaging series is the perfect way to bring American history to life for young children, providing them with the right role models, supplementing Common Core learning in the classroom, and best of all, inspiring them to strive and dream. -- Dial Books

I should just call this Brad Meltzer week on Booking Mama. To start the week, I reviewed his latest thriller THE PRESIDENT'S SHADOW; and now, I'm featuring his new children's picture book ORDINARY PEOPLE CHANGE THE WORLD: I AM LUCILLE BALL.

I AM LUCILLE BALL is part of the Ordinary People Change the World series; and while I was aware that Mr. Meltzer has been writing picture books, I had no idea how fantastic they are. I shouldn't be surprised. I absolutely adore this concept and think it's wonderful that these books are both cute and educational. Leave it to Mr. Meltzer to find a great way to teach kids about famous people who made a difference while also sending a powerful message that everyone can be a hero!

But I AM LUCILLE BALL isn't just for kids despite the fantastic illustrations and interesting story. I was surprised by how much I learned about the famous comedienne behind the iconic television series I Love Lucy. Like many funny people, her childhood wasn't easy, but Ms. Ball used humor to help her get through the tough times. As she grew older, she decided that she wanted a career in comedy; and after a lot of rejections, she got a job in a football comedy starring none other than the Three Stooges.

I loved learning the story of how Lucille Ball got her first big break on CBS with her husband Desi Arnaz. (It's a pretty special story!) She went on to be the first woman to run a major Hollywood studio, and her studio went on to produce some pretty amazing shows like Star Trek and Mission: Impossible. She also was awarded The Presidential Medal of Freedom!

Another thing I appreciated about I AM LUCILLE BALL was the way the story was presented. The book is written in first person from Ms. Ball's point of view (that's probably obvious based on the title), and I loved how she told her story. In addition to the text, the cute illustrations by illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos perfectly complement the tone of the book. I especially liked there were lots of picture bubbles to give even more details about Ms. Ball's life... and actually add some humor to the book.

I absolutely adored everything about I AM LUCILLE BALL... especially the message. Ms. Ball not only tells the story of her life and her accomplishment, but she also gives some fantastic advice. There actually are some great tidbits of wisdom woven into her story as well as her most important life lesson: "In this world, the person you need to love most is you."

I told you I AM LUCILLE BALL is one special picture book! I definitely need to check out Ms. Meltzer's other picture books in this series! Highly recommended!

Thanks to the publisher for providing a review copy of this book.

If you'd like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children's books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week, please leave a comment as well as a link below with your name/blog name and the title of the book! Feel free to grab the little button too!

1 comment:

bermudaonion said...

I need to get this book for the kids down the street from us - their dogs are named Lucy and Ethel.