"The best children's stories are wisdom dipped in art and words." -Peter Reynolds

Friday, April 11, 2014

Tales of Famous Heroes

Tales of Famous Heroes by Peter and Connie Roop, and illustrated by Rebecca Zomchek, was published in 2010 by Scholastic Inc. This text is a collection of short biographies of famous heroes and their contributions to the world. The influential people featured includes: Paul Revere & Sybil Ludington, Sacagawea, Sojourner Truth, Frederick Douglass, Florence Nightingale, Mohandas Gandhi, Winston Churchill, Rosa Parks, Jonas Salk, Nelson Mandela, Neil Armstrong, Jane Goodall, The Tuskegee Airmen, Muhammad Ali, Billie Jean King, Sonia Sotomayor, and Barack Obama.

There is a Table of Contents in the beginning of the book that is very brief and simple to navigate. The title page for each person has a photograph or very realistic illustration pertaining to the person's life as the background. There is an illustrated portrait of the famous person in the foreground of the background. Each person is drawn with a "bobble-head" type head which makes them seem more child-friendly. On this same title page is the person's name in bold print, their dates of living, and an influential quote from that person. The historical information on each person is 3-5 pages long and very detailed, but in child-friendly terms. The biographies explain the person's childhood, family, personality and character traits, major events in their life, accomplishments, and contributions. There are also cartoon illustrations to coincide with the text that are labeled very nicely. The pages and illustrations are vibrantly colored and spark a reader's attention. This same pattern continues throughout the book and is very visually appealing and engaging. The index at the end of the book is very lengthy and helpful for any child searching for specific information.

Tales of Famous Heroes is very child-friendly and enthusiastic. I am not a history buff but the information about each person seems very accurate. Overall, I really enjoyed reading Tales of Famous Heroes and I think upper elementary students will as well. There were even a few people in this book that I'm embarrassed to say I had never heard of!

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