Our 19 diverse picture book biographies, new in 2019.
Click on any photo to learn more about each #19PBbios book...
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Jan - Feb 2019
Planting StoriesBy Anika Aldamuy Denise & Paola Escobar
An inspiring picture book biography of storyteller, puppeteer, and New York City’s first Puerto Rican librarian, who championed bilingual literature.
A Song for Gwendolyn BrooksBy Alice Faye Duncan & Xia Gordon
With a voice wise and witty, Gwendolyn Brooks wrote poems about the urban Black experience. She grew up on the South Side of Chicago, her talent lovingly nurtured by her parents. Alice Faye Duncan has created a song to celebrate Gwendolyn’s life and work, illuminating the tireless struggle of revision and the sweet reward of success.
Brave BallerinaBy Michelle Meadows & Ebony Glenn
Janet Collins wanted to be a ballerina in the 1930s and '40s, a time when racial segregation was widespread in the United States. She was accepted into the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo as a teenager -- on the condition that she paint her skin white in order to blend in with the other dancers onstage for performances. Janet said no, cried about it...and kept on dancing. This is the story of a remarkable pioneer.
The Journey of YorkBy Hasan Davis & Alleana Harris
Experience the famed Lewis and Clark Expedition through the eyes of York, the Corps. of Discovery's only African-American member. His story is History!
Secret EngineerBy Rachel Dougherty
Emily Roebling always loved to learn—especially science and math. When she joined a family of brilliant engineers and learned their plans for the riskiest bridge ever built, she never imagined it would all come down to her. Secret Engineer tells the powerful story of the Brooklyn Bridge and the woman who made it possible.
Hedy Lamarr's Double LifeBy Laurie Wallmark & Katy Wu
The picture book biography, Hedy Lamarr’s Double Life, tells the story of the actress’s hidden life—movie star by day, inventor by night. For many years only her closest friends knew her secret—Hedy co-invented the technology, frequency skipping, which keeps our electronic devices safe from hacking.
March - April 2019
Magic RamenBy Andrea Wang & Kana Urbanowicz
For years, Momofuku Ando dreamed about making a new kind of ramen noodle soup that was quick, convenient, and tasty for the hungry people in Japan following WWII. With persistence, creativity, and a little inspiration, Ando succeeded. This is the true story behind one of the world’s most popular foods.
A Computer Called KatherineBy Suzanne Slade & Veronica Miller Jamison
The inspiring true story of mathematician Katherine Johnson who counted and computed her way to NASA, and helped put the first man on the moon!
(Kirkus Starred Review — "...compellingly told biography...")
Martin & AnneBy Nancy Churnin & Yevgenia Nayberg
This tells the parallel journeys of Anne Frank and Martin Luther King, Jr., born the same year a world apart. Different on the outside, their hearts beat with the same hope as they faced ugly prejudices and violence with words of love and faith that inspire us today.
Gloria Takes a StandBy Jess Rinker & Daria Peoples-Riley
From unconventional childhood, to Smith College, to Ms. magazine, to the women's liberation movement, to feminist icon--Gloria Takes a Stand brings to the page a spirited look at Gloria Steinem's influential life, energizing a new generation of feminists to stand up and demand equal rights for all people.
The Boy Who Grew a ForestBy Sophia Gholz & Kayla Harren
As a boy, Jadav Payeng was distressed by the destruction deforestation and erosion was causing on his island home in India's Brahmaputra River. So he began planting trees. What began as a small thicket of bamboo, grew over the years into 1,300 acre forest filled with native plants and animals. The Boy Who Grew a Forest tells the inspiring true story of Payeng--and reminds us all of the difference a single person with a big idea can make.
StonewallBy Rob Sanders & Jamey Cristoph
When the Stonewall Inn was raided on June 28, 1969, members of the LGBTQ+ community began to demand their equal rights. Movingly narrated by the Stonewall Inn itself and featuring stirring, dynamic illustrations, Stonewall: A Building. An Uprising. A Revolution. celebrates the Stonewall Inn’s role in the LGBT+ civil rights movement.
RiseBy Bethany Hegedus & Tonya Engel
Poet. Performer. Writer. Activist. Humanitarian.
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the publication of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, and with a foreword by her grandson, Colin A. Johnson, RISE! celebrates the life, spirit, and legacy of Dr. Maya Angelou.
Miep and the Most Famous DiaryBy Meeg Pincus & Jordi Solano
This is the story of Miep Gies, the woman who saved Anne Frank's diary and hid her family for two years. Following Miep from the day the Nazis arrest the Franks to the day Miep finally breaks down and reads Anne’s diary years later, this book shows another side of the Anne Frank story. It also speaks to youth of today as a story of an ordinary woman who showed extraordinary bravery in the face of prejudice toward others.
Sept - Dec 2019
Paper SonBy Julie Leung & Chris Sasaki
An inspiring picture-book biography of animator Tyrus Wong, the Chinese American immigrant responsible for bringing Disney's Bambi to life.
Ona Judge Outwits the WashingtonsBy Gwendolyn Hooks & Simone Agoussoye
Soon after American colonists had won independence from Great Britain, Ona Judge was fighting for her own freedom from one of America's most famous founding fathers, George Washington. George and Martha Washington valued Ona as one of their most skilled and trustworthy slaves, but she would risk everything to achieve complete freedom.
Queen of PhysicsBy Teresa Robeson and Rebecca Huang
When Wu Chien Shiung was born in China in the early 1900s, girls typically
did not attend school. They weren’t considered as smart as boys. But her parents thought differently, so they gave her a name meaning “courageous hero” and encouraged her love of learning and science. Chien Shiung found her passion in physics, which took her all the way to the United States, where she she became what Newsweek called "Queen of Physics"!