Kid Presidents: True Tales of Childhood from America's Presidents (Kid Legends #1)

by David Stabler (Author) Doogie Horner (Illustrator)

Kid Presidents: True Tales of Childhood from America's Presidents (Kid Legends #1)
Reading Level: 4th − 5th Grade
Series: Kid Legends
Hilarious childhood biographies and full-color illustrations show how George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Barack Obama, and other presidents-to-be faced kid-sized problems growing up in America.

Every president started out as a kid! Forget the legends, tall tales, and historic achievements--before they were presidents, the future leaders of the United States had regular-kid problems just like you. John F. Kennedy hated his big brother. Lyndon Johnson pulled pranks in class. Barack Obama was bothered by bullies. And Bill Clinton was crazy clumsy (he once broke his leg jumping rope). Kid Presidents tells all of their stories and more with full-color cartoon illustrations on every page. History has never been this much fun!
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School Library Journal

Gr 4-6—With cartoonish illustrations that will attract fans of Jeff Kinney's "The Diary of a Wimpy Kid" and Rachel Renee Russel's "The Dork Diaries," this informative offering leaves no presidential childhood rock unturned. Children will enjoy the parallels of these presidential lives and their own, from Franklin Roosevelt's helicopter mother to Hebert Hoover's friendships with Native Americans to Barack Obama's tumultuous years in Indonesia. Disorganized kids will be happy to read that John F. Kennedy was given a scathing report card that once stated that he "can seldom locate his possessions." Kids will especially enjoy the section on pranks pulled by previous presidents. Oddly, this book is not organized chronologically, nor is each segment broken down into any rational sequence. Overall, the style is funny and lighthearted. Being a kid isn't always easy, even for those on the path for greatness, like many of these men. The further reading at the end of book provides a nice resource for those who want to learn more about their favorite resident of the Oval Office. Give this fun and accessible title to "Who Was..." series (Penguin) fans or reluctant readers who enjoys history.—Keith Klang, Port Washington Public Library, NY

Copyright 2014 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Publishers Weekly

"Every president in United States history started out like you and me," writes Stabler (a pseudonym for author Robert Schnakenberg), before going on to prove it. The stories he's assembled show how the young lives of the men who became president encompassed nearly everything that kids go through today, including blended families (Lincoln), helicopter parenting (F.D.R.), crushes (Nixon), bullies (Eisenhower, Kennedy), being the new kid (Obama), and odd obsessions that drive parents crazy ("Herbert Hoover once ate nothing but pears for two whole days"). The text is straightforward, upbeat, and resolutely apolitical, organized into easy-to-digest sections that alternate between stories of individual presidents and roundups on themes like chores, jobs, and what teachers thought of the presidents as students. "When you grow up, you're either going to be governor or get in a lot of trouble," said Bill Clinton's sixth-grade teacher (though no citation for this or any other quotation is provided). Horner's spot cartoons ensure readers won't mistake this for a history textbook and contribute some funny metafictional moments: "We need strawberries!" says Theodore Roosevelt's mother in one drawing. "Stop waving to the readers and go!" Ages 8-12. (Oct.)

Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

"Just like history class, only hilarious."—Tim Federle, author of Better Nate Than Ever

"With cartoonish illustrations that will attract fans of Jeff Kinney's The Diary of a Wimpy Kid and Rachel Renée Russell's The Dork Diaries, this informative offering leaves no presidential childhood rock unturned."—School Library Journal

"Full of fun facts your kids can relate to, colorful illustrations, and interesting portrayals of presidents as more human than the legends they became."—BNKids Blog

"Every leader of our country was once a kid, as the 20 true tales in this fun, fact-filled, whimsically illustrated book so cleverly remind us."—American Profile

"The perfect gift for both presidential and history buffs, brimming with fun facts and full-color, comics-style artwork."—Jennifer M. Brown, Shelf Awareness for Readers

"Get the hilarious history of each president's childhood. Kid Presidents by David Stabler includes quirky illustrations and plenty of unusual trivia."—Boys' Life

"Caricatures by Horner are whimsical and funny, a good match for a book that demonstrates that every president started life as a goofy, regular kid."—Booklist

"Fun and funny."—

"The book's entertaining and informative format...showcases the meticulous and appealing style author David Stabler used in Secret Lives of Great Authors and Secret Lives of the Supreme Court. [And] do not skip the asides Horner adds to the illustrations in Kid Presidents. Though the written remarks look like minor elements on pages, they provide major tongue-in-cheek entertainment."—The Florida Time-Union

"Kid Presidents gives readers a humorous peek into the early lives of our country's leaders."—Time for Kids

"Little-known and unknown facts and anecdotes about the nation's presidents comprise this short book and should find an audience with students who can't get enough of world record books."—Library Media Connection

..".entertaining..."—Kirkus Reviews

"This book is altogether too much fun! The pictures are hilarious, the stories are surprising and interesting, and the whole thing is delightful enough to make people forget that it's about America, and history."—Ben H. Winters, author of The Secret Life of Ms Finkelman

"Kid Presidents is a hoot! Who would have thought that the path to the White House starts with being a cool little kid?"—Joseph D'Agnese, author of American History Comic Books.

Praise for Kid Athletes:
..".outstanding...Inspiring and entertaining, Kid Athletes isn't just for sports fans."—Booklist, starred review

"Even if you don't exactly love sports, this book only says a little bit about them in the actual sport, so go out and get this book because it will teach you a lot and you will enjoy it immensely."—Kidsday reporters, Newsday

"Perfect for the adolescent set, these inspiring stories mix fun and non-fiction."—Geeks of Doom

Praise for Kid Artists:
..".impressively diverse..."—Booklist

"For budding artists, here's a heartening reminder that 17 unconventional greats—not to mention all the rest—started out as children too."—Kirkus Reviews

"Memorably weird childhood moments—Jackson Pollock accidentally had part of a finger chopped off and then eaten by a rooster—are likely to stick with readers, as will Horner's impish cartoons."—Publishers Weekly
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Quirk Books
Publication date
October 28, 2014
Kid Legends
BISAC categories
JNF025170 - Juvenile Nonfiction | History | United States/General
JNF007130 - Juvenile Nonfiction | Biography & Autobiography | Presidents & First Families (U.S.)
Library of Congress categories
Childhood and youth
United States
IndieFab awards
Bronze Medal Winner 2014 - 2014
Finalist 2015 - 2015

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