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Biographies and Autobiographies for Preschool Through Grade 3

Check out these biographies and autobiographies from Macmillan Children's Publishing Group!

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Roaring Brook Press

Keep Your Eye on the Kid

The Early Years of Buster Keaton

FAMOUS AT FOUR! Four-year-old Buster Keaton became one of the best-known comedians of his age and inches when his father threw him across a vaudeville...

Catherine Brighton

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About The Author
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Henry Holt and Co.

Visiting Langston

A wonderful picture book introduction to a legendary American writer. "Today I'm going to wear My favorite pink blouse I'm going with my daddy To visit...

"...A wonderful picture book introduction to a legendary American writer. "Today I'm going to wear My favorite pink blouse I'm going with my daddy To visit.... A wonderful picture book introduction to a legendary American writer. "Today I'm going to wear My favorite pink blouse I'm going with my daddy To visit Langston's house." It's a special day when a little girl and her father go to visit the house where the great poet Langston Hughes lived-especially when the little girl is a poet herself! Thi..."

By Willie Perdomo and Bryan Collier

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Henry Holt and Co.

Before John Was a Jazz Giant

A Song of John Coltrane

Young John Coltrane was all ears. And there was a lot to hear growing up in the South in the 1930s: preachers praying, music on the radio, the bustling of the...

By Carole Boston Weatherford and Sean Qualls

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Henry Holt and Co.

Oye, Celia!

A celebration of Celia Cruz, the legendary Queen of Salsa A little girl carries her favorite record with her to an impromptu neighborhood dance party and...

"...A celebration of Celia Cruz, the legendary Queen of Salsa A little girl carries her favorite record with her to an impromptu neighborhood dance party and.... A celebration of Celia Cruz, the legendary Queen of Salsa A little girl carries her favorite record with her to an impromptu neighborhood dance party and calls out for her favorite singer. “Oye, Celia!” she shouts. And as she dances she tells Celia what she hears in her singing—loss, passion, sadness, happiness, history, and more. Oye, Cel..."

By Katie Sciurba and Edel Rodriguez

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Feiwel & Friends

Ballerina Dreams

The inspiring story of five little girls whose ballerina dreams come true with the help of their dedicated teacher. 

By Joann Ferrara, Lauren Thompson and James Estrin

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A sensitive and loving portait of a Muslim-American family Meet Inram, a young Muslim American boy who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. He likes to do...

"...A sensitive and loving portait of a Muslim-American family Meet Inram, a young Muslim American boy who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. He likes to do.... A sensitive and loving portait of a Muslim-American family Meet Inram, a young Muslim American boy who lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. He likes to do the same things as most kids his age—play in the park, take karate lessons, and tell jokes with his friends. Inram knows that some people don’t understand what it means to be a Muslim. ..."

By Tricia Brown and Ken Cardwell

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Henry Holt and Co.

Abraham Lincoln Comes Home

When Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in 1865, the country grieved for the courageous president who had guided them through the Civil War. Over the course of...

"...When Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in 1865, the country grieved for the courageous president who had guided them through the Civil War. Over the course of.... When Abraham Lincoln was assassinated in 1865, the country grieved for the courageous president who had guided them through the Civil War. Over the course of thirteen somber days, people paid homage as Lincoln’s funeral train made its way from Washington, D.C., to Springfield, Illinois. In moving prose and stunning paintings, a young b..."

By Robert Burleigh and Wendell Minor

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Henry Holt / Christy Ottaviano Books

Neo Leo

The Ageless Ideas of Leonardo da Vinci

In 1781, Thomas Paine came up with a model for a single-span bridge; in 1887, Adolf Eugen Fick made the first pair of contact lenses; and in 1907, Paul Cornu...

"...In 1781, Thomas Paine came up with a model for a single-span bridge; in 1887, Adolf Eugen Fick made the first pair of contact lenses; and in 1907, Paul Cornu.... In 1781, Thomas Paine came up with a model for a single-span bridge; in 1887, Adolf Eugen Fick made the first pair of contact lenses; and in 1907, Paul Cornu built the first helicopter. But Leonardo da Vinci thought of all these ideas more than five hundred years ago! At once an artist, inventor, engineer, and scientist, da Vinci wrote..."

Gene Barretta Gene Barretta

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Henry Holt and Co.

Bottle Houses

The Creative World of Grandma Prisbrey

Being inside one of Grandma Prisbrey's houses was like being inside a rainbow or a kaleidoscope or a jewel. A vibrant portrait of American visionary artist...

"...Being inside one of Grandma Prisbrey's houses was like being inside a rainbow or a kaleidoscope or a jewel. A vibrant portrait of American visionary artist.... Being inside one of Grandma Prisbrey's houses was like being inside a rainbow or a kaleidoscope or a jewel. A vibrant portrait of American visionary artist Grandma Prisbrey The walls of Grandma Prisbrey's houses glowed and glittered with color because she made them out of bottles. Large and small, fancy and plain, Grandma Prisbrey salvag..."

By Melissa Eskridge Slaymaker and Julie Paschkis

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Henry Holt and Co.

An Eye for Color

The Story of Josef Albers

As a child, Josef Albers loved to watch his handyman father paint houses.When Josef grew up and became an artist, he reduced each image to its simplest shapes,...

"...As a child, Josef Albers loved to watch his handyman father paint houses.When Josef grew up and became an artist, he reduced each image to its simplest shapes,.... As a child, Josef Albers loved to watch his handyman father paint houses.When Josef grew up and became an artist, he reduced each image to its simplest shapes, breaking it down into blocks of color. He made an incredible discovery: he could alter the entire mood of a painting just by changing the way he combined the colors! Josef spe..."

By Julia Breckenreid and Natasha Wing

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Henry Holt and Co.

Building on Nature

The Life of Antoni Gaudi

In a small village in Spain lives a boy named Antoni Gaudí.   His home is in Catalonia, a place of jagged mountain peaks and silvery olive trees, splashed...

By Rachel Victoria Rodriguez and Julie Paschkis

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Henry Holt and Co.

Through Georgia's Eyes

A gorgeous, evocative biography of one of America’s most beloved artists. Georgia O’Keeffe saw the world differently from most people. As a child she...

"...A gorgeous, evocative biography of one of America’s most beloved artists. Georgia O’Keeffe saw the world differently from most people. As a child she.... A gorgeous, evocative biography of one of America’s most beloved artists. Georgia O’Keeffe saw the world differently from most people. As a child she roamed the prairie with a sketch pad in her hand, struggling to capture on paper what she saw all around her. At art school she learned to speak in paint on canvas. But Georgia felt confined by c..."

By Rachel Victoria Rodriguez and Julie Paschkis

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Henry Holt and Co.

Elizabeth Leads the Way

Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the Right to Vote

Elizabeth Cady Stanton stood up and fought for what she believed in. From an early age, she knew that women were not given rights equal to men. But rather than...

"...Elizabeth Cady Stanton stood up and fought for what she believed in. From an early age, she knew that women were not given rights equal to men. But rather than.... Elizabeth Cady Stanton stood up and fought for what she believed in. From an early age, she knew that women were not given rights equal to men. But rather than accept her lesser status, Elizabeth went to college and later gathered other like-minded women to challenge the right to vote.Here is the inspiring story of an extraordinary w..."

By Tanya Lee Stone and Rebecca Gibbon

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Henry Holt and Co.

Patience Wright

American Sculptor and Revolutionary Spy

The intriguing story of one of America’s first spies—a woman! Born in 1725 in the American colonies, Patience Wright discovered her talent for art at an...

"...The intriguing story of one of America’s first spies—a woman! Born in 1725 in the American colonies, Patience Wright discovered her talent for art at an.... The intriguing story of one of America’s first spies—a woman! Born in 1725 in the American colonies, Patience Wright discovered her talent for art at an early age. As an adult, she joined her sister in a wax-sculpting business and later moved on her own to England. There, Patience became a spy for the colonies, hiding messages in the sculpt..."

By Pegi Deitz Shea and Bethanne Andersen

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Henry Holt and Co.

Now & Ben

The Modern Inventions of Benjamin Franklin

The inventions and inspiration of Benjamin Franklin and how they’ve stood the test of time What would you do if you lived in a community without a library,...

"...The inventions and inspiration of Benjamin Franklin and how they’ve stood the test of time What would you do if you lived in a community without a library,.... The inventions and inspiration of Benjamin Franklin and how they’ve stood the test of time What would you do if you lived in a community without a library, hospital, post office, or fire department? If you were Benjamin Franklin, you’d set up these organizations yourself. Franklin also designed the lightning rod, suggested the idea of da..."

Gene Barretta Gene Barretta

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Henry Holt and Co.

The Life of Benjamin Franklin

An American Original

The biography of one of America’s most important historical figures Benjamin Franklin is known as a printer, writer, scientist, inventor, and patriot....

"...The biography of one of America’s most important historical figures Benjamin Franklin is known as a printer, writer, scientist, inventor, and patriot..... The biography of one of America’s most important historical figures Benjamin Franklin is known as a printer, writer, scientist, inventor, and patriot. Franklin helped write the Declaration of Independence, served as a general in the French-Indian War, and held many other luminary positions. In elegant prose and vibrant pictures, Yona Zeldis M..."

By Yona Zeldis McDonough and Malcah Zeldis

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Henry Holt and Co.

Lincoln and Douglass

An American Friendship

Our 16th president is known for many things: He delivered the Emancipation Proclamation and the Gettysburg Address.He was tall and skinny and notoriously...

By Nikki Giovanni and Bryan Collier

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Henry Holt and Co.

Rosa

She had not sought this moment but she was ready for it. When the policeman bent down to ask “Auntie, are you going to move?” all the strength of all the...

"...She had not sought this moment but she was ready for it. When the policeman bent down to ask “Auntie, are you going to move?” all the strength of all the.... She had not sought this moment but she was ready for it. When the policeman bent down to ask “Auntie, are you going to move?” all the strength of all the people through all those many years joined in her. She said, “No.” An inspiring account of an event that shaped American history Fifty years after her refusal to give up her seat on a Mon..."

By Bryan Collier and Nikki Giovanni

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Nelson Mandela's autobiography, LONG WALK TO FREEDOM, offers a glimpse into the mind of a great leader, admired across the globe for his dedication to the...

"...Nelson Mandela's autobiography, LONG WALK TO FREEDOM, offers a glimpse into the mind of a great leader, admired across the globe for his dedication to the.... Nelson Mandela's autobiography, LONG WALK TO FREEDOM, offers a glimpse into the mind of a great leader, admired across the globe for his dedication to the struggles against apartheid in South Africa. Now the youngest readers can discover the remarkable story of Mandela's long walk from ordinary village boy, to his dynamic leadership of th..."

By Chris van Wyk and Paddy Bouma

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Roaring Brook Press

Mack Made Movies

Mack Sennett invented the Keystone Kops, filmed the first pie-in-the-face skit, and introduced Charlie Chaplin to the movies. Here Don Brown tells the story of...

"...Mack Sennett invented the Keystone Kops, filmed the first pie-in-the-face skit, and introduced Charlie Chaplin to the movies. Here Don Brown tells the story of.... Mack Sennett invented the Keystone Kops, filmed the first pie-in-the-face skit, and introduced Charlie Chaplin to the movies. Here Don Brown tells the story of this American movie genius, from his beginnings as a Vaudeville actor to his triumph as the "King of Comedy". Booklist Starred Review   Using his inimitable picture-book-biog..."

Don Brown Don Brown

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Square Fish

Django

Born into a travelling gypsy family, young Django Reinhardt taught himself guitar at an early age. He was soon acclaimed as the "Gypsy Genius" and "Prodigy...

Bonnie Christensen Bonnie Christensen

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Frances Foster Books

Down the Colorado

John Wesley Powell, the One-Armed Explorer

Although John Wesley Powell’s minister father always wanted his son to follow in his footsteps, young Wes had different plans for his future. Enraptured by the...

Deborah Kogan Ray Deborah Kogan Ray

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Farrar, Straus and Giroux

The Escape of Oney Judge

Martha Washington’s Slave Finds Freedom

When General George Washington is elected the first President of the United States, his wife chooses young Oney Judge, a house slave who works as a seamstress...

Emily Arnold McCully Emily Arnold McCully

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Melanie Kroupa Books

Georgia Rises

A Day in the Life of Georgia O'Keeffe

Inspired by Georgia O’Keeffe’s own descriptive letters, awardwinning author Kathryn Lasky imagines a day in the life of this legendary artist at her Abiquiu,...

By Kathryn Lasky and Ora Eitan

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