Books that Inspire All Ages. Unique stories about overcoming adversity and how hard work and believing in yourself pay off. Kids will love reading about people who turned their ideas and dreams into something noteworthy -- and those who have made an impact on the world around them.
This is Your World: The Story of Bob Ross by Sophia Gholz
Learn how Bob changed from being a stern Air Force sergeant to a gentle painting instructor on public television. Filled with Bob’s encouraging quotes throughout, this special book will encourage children to be brave and believe in themselves as they create.
Dolly! The Story of Dolly Parton and her Big Dream by Robyn McGrath
You’ve likely heard of the performer Dolly Parton. But do you know where this dazzling songwriter and musician draws her roots? As one of twelve children growing up in rural Tennessee, Dolly was determined to be seen and heard. From her front porch to her church choir, every stage was an opportunity to perform and share her many talents. While balancing farm chores with schoolwork, Dolly never lost sight of her dreams, composing her first song at age five and performing at the Grand Ole Opry at age thirteen.
Dr. Fauci: How a Boy From Brooklyn Became America’s Doctor by Kate Messner
The definitive picture book biography of Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and one of the most crucial figures in the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Sweetest Scoop: Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream Revolution by Lisa Robison
A biography of the entrepreneurial, activist duo behind Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream, and their rocky road to success. Legendary ice cream makers Ben & Jerry are behind some of the wackiest, tastiest flavors we know and love. They started a business together, and with no idea how to actually make ice cream, they made it happen with teamwork, determination, and an appetite for fun and experimentation. Chock-full of facts and humor, this entertaining biography about two hardworking partners living their Americone Dream gives readers plenty to chew on. Through their inventiveness, passion, and activism, Ben & Jerry dreamed of making the world a better, more delicious place—one scoop at a time.
Lady Bird Johnson, That’s Who!: The Story of a Cleaner and Greener America By Tracy Nelson Maurer
A lively picture book biography of Lady Bird Johnson, with a focus on her environmentalist passion and legacy as First Lady.
King of Ragtime: The Story of Scott Joplin by Stephen Costanza
A stunning, rhythmic picture book biography of African American composer Scott Joplin, whose ragtime music paved the way for jazz.
From an Idea to Nike by Lowey Bundy Sichol
Ever wonder how Nike became the athletics empire it is today? From an Idea to Nike digs into the marketing campaigns and strategy that turned this running-shoe company into the outfitter for many athletes as well as the iconic American brand. With infographics and engaging visuals throughout, this behind-the-scenes look into the historical and business side of Nike will be an invaluable resource for kids interested in what makes this business run. Titles also available: Google, LEGO and Disney.
First Generation: 36 Trailblazing Immigrants and Refugees Who Make America Great by Sandra Neil Wallace & Rich Wallace
The men and women in this book represent nations from Somalia to Germany, from Syria to China, from Mexico to Sweden, and more. They are people like Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, international singing sensation Celia Cruz, star basketball player Dikembe Mutombo, world-renowned physicist Albert Einstein, and influential journalist Jorge Ramos. And they are all immigrants or refugees to the United States of America. Their courage, their achievements, and their determination to change the world have helped make our country a stronger place.
I am Walt Disney (Ordinary People Change the World) by Brad Meltzer
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 one of America's icons 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. This volume features Walt Disney, who makes dreams come true for himself and countless kids around the world. Also available: Marie Curie, Neil Armstrong and many more.
The A-Z of Wonder Women by Yvonne Lin
Highlighting notable and inspiring women from across the globe and throughout time, The A-Z of Wonder Women features biographies of trailblazers and groundbreakers, including Ada Lovelace, Oprah Winfrey, Ruth Ginsberg, and Wajeha al-Huwaider. This empowering alphabet-style book celebrates a wide range of skills and masteries in the arts, politics and activism, STEM, and more, providing accessible facts about these heroic women--and inspiring young readers to make the change they want to see in the world.
Black Music Greats: 40 Inspiring Icons by Olivier Cachin
The biggest names…the coolest sounds…the 40 most inspirational movers, shakers, and innovators in black music are here. Learn how these black musicians changed music, from the creation of blues to the invention of rap.Each spread presents a single musician or band, highlighting key facts about their background, most popular songs, most iconic shows, genre-defining techniques, friends, rivals, and nicknames, along with a fun, illustrated depiction of them that calls out elements of their signature style.
Little People, Big Dreams: David Bowie
Discover the life of David Bowie, the starman who dazzled audiences with his music. As a child, young David had a head full of songs and ideas. He was inspired by the pop and mod scenes in Britain to pick up the saxophone. After earning his stripes in some of the coolest bands in London, David splashed onto the solo scene. His songwriting talent and musical skill made him one of rock and roll's all-time greatest artists. This moving book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the musician's life.
Run the Show like CEO Oprah Winfrey
When Oprah Winfrey was a little girl, she watched her grandma hang clothes out on the line. Oprah adored her grandma, but she knew in that moment her life was going to be different... And she was right. Discover how Oprah became a billionaire CEO and media mogul in this true story of her life.
Boss the Bestseller List like J. K. Rowling
When Joanne Rowling was a young woman, she found herself down and out of luck. But, she had a best-selling idea and a tenacious spirit. If only she could find someone who wanted to publish her book...Discover how J. K. Rowling became a best-selling author and publishing sensation in this true story of her life.
RESPECT: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul by Carole Boston Weatherford
Aretha Franklin was born to sing. The daughter of a pastor and a gospel singer, her musical talent was clear from her earliest days in her father’s Detroit church where her soaring voice spanned more than three octaves. Her string of hit songs earned her the title “the Queen of Soul,” multiple Grammy Awards, and a place in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. But Aretha didn’t just raise her voice in song, she also spoke out against injustice and fought for civil rights.
Little People, Big Dreams: Stephen Hawking
When Stephen Hawking was a little boy, he used to stare up at the stars and wonder about the universe. Although he was never top of the class, his curiosity took him to the best universities in England: Oxford and Cambridge. It also led him to make one of the biggest scientific discoveries of the 20th century: Hawking radiation. This moving book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the brilliant physicist's life.
40 Inspiring Icons: Super Scientists
From Galileo Galilei's terrific telescope discoveries, to Louis Pasteur's victorious vaccinations, to Ada Lovelace's cracking computer codes, discover how each of these scientists spent their lives asking questions and making leaps and bounds in the world of science and technology. Beginning with the Ancient Greek philosopher Thales, who discovered geometry and astronomy, right up to the modern astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who has popularized complex scientific theories through the use of simple language, these are the 40 super scientists to be learned about by all.
Updated: December 2022