Saturday, January 7, 2017

Kid Konnection: I am Jim Henson

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 a new picture book in an already fantastic series!

Summary: We can all be heroes. That’s the inspiring message of this New York Times bestselling picture book biography series from historian and author Brad Meltzer. This volume focuses on Jim Henson, the creator of the Muppets and Sesame Street.

This friendly, fun biography series focuses on the traits that made our heroes great–the traits that kids can aspire to in order to live heroically themselves. Jim Henson, for example, was always dreaming up something new, and always expressing his belief in the goodness of people. Henson was a born performer with a terrific sense of humor, and he used those talents to help create two of the most beloved programs in television history: The Muppet Show and Sesame Street. Through his Muppets, Jim showed the world that there’s nothing more beautiful than imagination, especially when it’s accompanied by laughter and kindness.

Each book in this series tells the story of one inspiring individual through lively text and art that works well for the youngest nonfiction readers. At the back are an excellent timeline and photos. -- Dial

I am so excited to share with you the latest book in Brad Meltzer's "Ordinary People Change the World" series -- I AM JIM HENSON! I absolutely adored the other books that I've read in this series, and this one holds a near and dear place in my heart because it's about Jim Henson, the creator of the Muppets and Sesame Street. I am a huge fan of both the Muppets and Sesame Street, and many of my fondest childhood television memories are centered around these characters.

I AM JIM HENSON is an outstanding book -- there is no other word for it. This picture book, aimed at ages 5 - 8 (and of course 47 year olds too!), tells the story of Jim Henson's life... in his words. The book explains how Mr. Henson developed his imagination, his sense of humor, and his love of movies and costumes. It also shows the important role his grandparents played in his life and how his grandma encouraged him to tell stories.

I AM JIM HENSON also details how Mr. Henson discovered that he wanted to work in television -- there's a great lesson about persistence here. Readers will also get a glimpse into the creation of Kermit the Frog (Hint: Mr. Henson made him from his mother's old wool coat!) as well as the origins of Sesame Street and The Muppet Show.

I love every single thing about this book -- from the story, to the cartoon bubbles, to the photos; however, I would be remiss if I didn't tell you just how adorable the illustrations are.  Christopher Eliopoulos is the illustrator for all of the books in the "Ordinary People Change the World" series, and I love his work. This book has the most adorable little Jim Henson. He's actually looks like his full bearded adult self even when he's a little kid. And I thought Mr. Eliopoulos did an excellent job in drawing all of the Muppets.

But here's what made I AM JIM HENSON extra special to me...  the overall messages in this book. Of course, we all know that Mr. Henson was an amazing creator; however, he also had a beautiful life philosophy. He believed that there is good in all of us, no matter how different we might seem. He also challenged individuals to create something new, share what you love, and find others with the same dreams. We could all use a bit more of Mr. Henson in our lives, right?

I AM JIM HENSON is my new favorite picture book, and Mr. Meltzer's "Ordinary People Change the World" series is one of my all-time favorite series. I love how these books teach kids that it's perfectly normal to have dreams, be successful, and be a good person. 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 loved biographies as a kid and remember working my way through a series in the school library. I'm sure I would have loved this book. Heck, I'm sure I'd love it now!