Baby Frederico Thursday Reviews! – ‘I Am Abraham Lincoln’

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*Every Thursday we introduce you to another quick bedtime story (or book review) from our family’s favorite resident reptile – Baby Frederico. His backstory can be found here.  Enjoy!

Baby Frederico loves his Momma Mia and Papá Frita, his buddy Grenelda the Grasshopper, blue crayons, popcorn and…books about Abraham Lincoln.  Here is something new:

April 10, 2014

Hi everyone,

Here is a brand new book, hot off the press, and by one of the coolest new children’s authors on the shelf – Brad Meltzer (he even signed his book for us).  My Papa Frita likes to watch his television show ‘Decoded’ on The History Channel; I like to read the great new series, Ordinary People Change the World, that he is now writing for reptilian (and human) readers like us!

So today, let’s make a list of all the great things I love about I Am Abraham Lincoln (2014, Penguin) with illustrations by the amazing (and former letterer for Marvel Comics!) Christopher Eliopoulos.  This is a book of history and helpers and heroes and friendship and politics and growing up…in just 38 short pages.

1.  There is nothing like a good book of words AND drawings, all in the same place. This book does that on EVERY page.

2.  There’s a turtle in this book, and you know how much I love small green animals.

3.  The book is written from the point of view of Abraham Lincoln as a little boy.

4.  Abe even gives us some ideas about how to deal with bullies.

5.  Abe tells us about how many times he failed before he was elected president of the United States.  My grandma always says, “If at first you don’t succeed, try and try again.”  Abe must have had a grandma like mine!

6.  There is even a page of photographs from Abe’s real life.

7.  The most important part of the book is that it explains how one person can make a difference – one child, one adult.  I could even be a hero to someone!

I am learning that ordinary people can and do change the world.  Abe is a lot more like you than you might think.  If you’ll read this book, there is no telling what it will make you stand up for now….and when you grow up!

Reading is it,

Baby Frederico

We Tell Stories and We Sell Stories

 Books Lots of

If you haven’t guessed it yet, we love local independent bookstores!  I mean, we are crazy about them.  We schedule trips around them.  We dream about them.  We talk and laugh and think about them.  We take pictures of them (the girls and I took this photo above just a few weeks ago at a used bookstore, Michael’s, at Western and Ollie in Oklahoma City).  We write about them.  And…we love the kinds of people who work in bookstores.

We just returned from three days of spending time with several of them at a national children’s book conference in San Antonio, Texas.  While we were there, we listened to a group of creative and accomplished authors that included Brad Meltzer (author of I Am Abraham Lincoln), Austin Kleon (author of Show Your Work), Chipp Kidd (author of Go:  A Kidd’s Guide to Graphic Design), and Tim Federle (author of Better Nate Than Never), who truly inspired us to love books more than ever and bring children along in loving books more than ever.

We saw the sights and walked in the rain along the city’s landmark RiverWalk.  We ate under the rock music videos of the Hard Rock Cafe and traded stories with taxicab drivers from places like Turkey and West Africa.  We laughed and lived and walked and talked and dreamed and worried and wondered and slept…peacefully.

It’s a handful of fellow booksellers, however, that we met and traded stories with that we’ll remember the most. They were wonderful and kindhearted people like Angie at The Country Bookshop in Southern Pines, North Carolina, Emily at Inklings in Yakima, Washington, Tegan at Queen Anne Book Company in Seattle, Washington, and Kirsten at Let’s Play Books! in Emmaus, Pennsylvania.  Each one reached out to us; and each one encouraged and inspired and applauded our shared dreams for the future.

During his talk with us about the importance of social media in a world of books in the 21st century, Austin Kleon said, “We tell stories and we sell stories.”  It’s as simple and wonderful as that isn’t it – we tell stories and we sell stories.  Has there ever been a phrase more aptly spoken:  in a bookstore, among new friends, around our kitchen table at home?

Everyone – everyone – needs a story.