The New York Times bestselling Ordinary People Change the World series that NPR.org credits with “saving the day” in this extraordinary time welcomes the 21st and 22nd additions to the collection this fall: I AM ANNE FRANK and I AM BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (both on-sale 10/13/2020). The inception for this series, now with more than 3.5 million copies in print, came from a personal place for Brad Meltzer: he wanted to give his own children heroes of character, kindness, and compassion – he did not want his children to emulate someone simply “famous for being famous” on social media. From his love of history, Brad knew there were better heroes for his children to look up to, and he decided to write about them.
What originally began as a passion project has become today’s leading and bestselling picture book biography series about famous historical figures from around the world, including Abraham Lincoln, Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King, Jr., Walt Disney, Billie Jean King, and Neil Armstrong, among many others.
I AM ANNE FRANK is the first hero in the series who was heroic as a child – all the other figures are adults, known for their accomplishments as adults. Frank’s courage and hope during a time of terror are still an inspiration for people around the world today. About this very special and necessary book, Brad says, “These books have always been for my own kids – to give them better heroes and arm them with lessons of resilience and compassion. Today, they need them more than ever. Look around. The rise of Anti-Semitism…the way religious, ethnic and racial minorities are regularly targeted…it’s impossible to ignore – and I want my kids to see and find strength from Anne Frank’s lessons. I am proud of my Jewish heritage, and Anne Frank’s incredible story is one I’m honored to share with readers everywhere.”
I AM BENJAMIN FRANKLIN focuses on Founding Father and scientist Benjamin Franklin – perfect for election season and talking to children about STEM and science.
This friendly, fun biography series focuses on the traits that made our heroes great ─ the traits that kids can aspire to in order to live heroically themselves. Each book tells the story of an icon in a lively, conversational way that works well for the youngest nonfiction readers and that always includes the hero's childhood influences. At the back are an excellent timeline and photos.While each story is unique, what binds them are their focus on perseverance and hard work.
This past fall, PBS Kids debuted Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum; the series launched as one of their most successful debuts and has been streamed more than 41 million times across PBS KIDS’-owned platforms since its premiere. Done in Christopher’s iconic art style, Xavier Riddle, his sister Yadina and their friend Bad meet heroes from the past and their strengths and perseverance help the group solve problems in their own lives. The series has been nominated for an Emmy and two animation Annie Awards, including Best Writing.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brad Meltzer is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Heroes for My Son, Heroes for My Daughter, a dozen suspense novels like The Escape Artist, and non-fiction books like The First Conspiracy. He is also the host of the History Channel television shows Brad Meltzer's Decoded and Brad Meltzer's Lost History (which he used to help find the missing 9/11 flag). He is the co-creator of Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum – and of course, the inspiration for Brad. He lives in Florida with his wife and their three children.
ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR
Christopher Eliopoulos began his illustration career at Marvel Comics, and has worked on thousands of comics, including Cosmic Commandos, Monster Mayhem, Franklin Richards: Son of a Genius, Pet Avengers, and Cow Boy, all of which he wrote and illustrated. The Yawns Are Coming!, Christopher’s first picture book as both author and illustrator, is on-sale now. He lives in New Jersey with his wife and their identical twin sons (when the boys are home from college).
FOR MORE INFO
Photo Credit: Brad Meltzer