Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday (4)

As part of the Non-Fiction Picture Book Challenge 2012 (Twitter: #nfpb2012), my goal is to read and review as many of the new non-fiction picture books that are released this year.  Wednesdays will be my primary day to post the reviews.

If you are participating in the challenge and would like to link your recent reviews, please add your link to the Mr. Linky below.

My journey to read as many nonfiction picture books has been a lot of fun.  I am steadily working through the January releases and beginning to find a few February releases that have made it into the wild.  Here are the four that I read this past week.  I would gladly include any of these to a classroom or school library, and believe that teachers and students will enjoy sharing them in class.

The President's Stuck in a Bathtub: Poems About the Presidents
Author: Susan Katz
Illustrator: Robert Neubecker
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (February 8, 2012)
Audience: 2nd to 5th grade

Yes, I know that this is a book of poems.  However, each poem is written about a different president and includes a fact box on each president that supports the information in the poem.  An overall fun book - part poetry, part nonfiction - and just in time for President's Day.

The Camping Trip that Changed America
Author: Barbara Rosenstock
Illustrator: Mordecai Gerstein
Publisher: Penguin Group (January 19, 2012)
Audience: 2nd to 5th grade

Though this is more of a fictionalized telling of a fateful camping trip that President Theodore Roosevelt went on with naturalist, John Muir, there is still some great information in this book.  It also is simply an enjoyable read.  I also enjoyed Gerstein's illustrations.

I will be reviewing this one in more detail in the near future.  Look for the review and a giveaway as part of the nonfiction picture book challenge.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind
Author: William Kamkwamba, Bryan Mealer
Illustrator: Elizabeth Zunon
Publisher: Dial (January 19, 2012)
Audience: 2nd to 5th grade

Every once in awhile, I pick up a book and while reading it something really strikes me as interesting or unusual.  With this book, I was amazed by how young Kamkwamba was when he discovered the power of the wind.

This will be another book I will be reviewing in greater length in the near future.  I am also hoping to be able to feature either an interview or guest post with William Kamkwamba.  Did I tell you how much fun I am having with this challenge?

Words Set Me Free: The Story of Young Frederick Douglass
Author: Lesa Cline-Ransome
Illustrator: James E. Ransome
Publisher: Simon & Schuster (January 24, 2012)
Audience: 2nd to 5th grade

After reading this picture book, I went in search of a biography on Frederick Douglass.  Though this book is a somewhat dramatized version of the real events, it really moved me emotionally as I read this book.  Just as much as slavery makes me angry, it makes me angry that people would withhold another person's right to read books.  And it makes me admire Frederick Douglass so much more for how passionate he became about reading and writing.

Don't forget to check in next week, when there will be more great books featured and always the possibility of a giveaway.