Below are a few of the picture books I’ve been reading. These books offer a wide variety of subject matter and illustrations.
ONE THOUSAND TRACINGS: HEALING THE WOUNDS OF WORLD WAR II by Lita Judge. Hyperion Books for Children, 2007.
This is a simply told, true story of a girl and her mother in post-World War II United States who began a grass roots movement to provide shoes and supplies to war victims in Germany. The end page collages of photos and letters combined with the breathtaking watercolor illustrations bring this tale to life with poignant detail. This book is a slice of history and humanity that should be shared in every classroom. http://www.amazon.com/One-Thousand-Tracings-Healing-Wounds/dp/1423100085/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1206555149&sr=1-1
THE STORY OF SALT by Mark Kurlansky. G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2006.
A colorfully illustrated history of salt, this book examines one of the most common elements used worldwide. Kurlansky shows how salt, now virtually taken for granted, has played such a pivotal role in various locales in the past. A timeline of “Salt through the Centuries” concludes the text. http://www.amazon.com/Story-Salt-Mark-Kurlansky/dp/0399239987/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1206555188&sr=1-1
HENRY’S FREEDOM BOX by Ellen Levine. Scholastic, 2007.
This 20008 Caldecott Honor book tells the fictionalized description of Henry “Box” Brown’s escape from slavery in 1849 when he mailed himself to freedom from Richmond to Philadelphia. The bold pictures and provocative story should encourage young readers to find more books exploring slavery in the pre-Civil War United States. http://www.amazon.com/Henrys-Freedom-Caldecott-Honor-Book/dp/043977733X/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1206555227&sr=1-1
AT GLEASON’S GYM by Ted Lewin. Roaring Brook Press, 2007.
Bold, bright illustrations accompany a condensed story of Sugar Boy Younan’s workout routine and quest for the National Silver Gloves Champion in the 110 Pound Bantam Weight Division. A couple of girl boxers are shown in the story as well, but the book’s primary audience would seem to be boys—especially reluctant readers. http://www.amazon.com/Gleasons-Gym-Neal-Porter-Books/dp/1596432314/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1206555264&sr=1-1