Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Doreen Rappaport and Kadir Nelson Team Up for a New Lincoln Book

Ok, so I'm back from my first trip to Boston and after a full day of rest, I'm ready to get back to the blogging thing. All in all it was a good trip, 35 kids left with me and 35 came back...I'm pretty sure they were the same 35, so that's good.

During our visit to Cover to Cover to open the 48 Hour Book Challenge, I picked up a preview copy of a new book written by Doreen Rappaport and illustrated by Kadir Nelson. Actually, Karen found it, handed it to me and I never gave it back.

Abe's Honest Words: The Life of Abraham Lincoln is bound to get a lot of attention when it is released in October. This dynamic duo has produced a beautiful book that will be at the top of many award lists. It seems that Nelson is bound to win big this year and by teaming with Rappaport, he may win more than once!

Doreen Rappaport's poetic description of Abraham Lincoln are simple and elegant all at the same time. The language will reach readers of all ages, and the book will serve as a great introduction to, in my opinion, our greatest president. Rappaport mixes her text with quotes from Lincoln. Some of the quotes are familiar, The Gettysburg Address, Second Inaugural Address and The House Divided speeches, but she manages to put some in that are not familiar and really speak to the character of this great man.

"The things I want to know are in books; my best friend is the man who'll git me a book I ain't read."

Doreen Rappaport has captured Lincoln in a clear, concise, voice that will touch anyone who reads this book.

What more can be said about Kadir Nelson's artwork? He manages to capture so much emotion and personality in his paintings, that the reader becomes part of them. The detail in this book, as in all of his books, is amazing. My favorite is painted from behind Lincoln as he addresses a crowd during an election. No two people in the crowd have the same expression. Some are thoughtful, others hopeful, some skeptical, but all are totally focused on the speaker, Abraham Lincoln. The artwork is breath taking.

I have long been a fan of Lincoln, even a collector of memorabilia as a kid. This book will become part of my collection at home and at school. Rappaport and Nelson have captured Lincoln in a dramatic yet kid friendly way.

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