Every great author started out as a kid. Before the best sellers, fan clubs, and beloved stories we know today, the world's most celebrated writers had regular-kid problems just like you. Sam Clemens (aka Mark Twain) loved to skip school and make mischief, with his best friend Tom, of course! A young J. R. R. Tolkien was bitten by a huge tarantula—or as he called it, “a spider as big as a dragon.” Toddler Zora Neale Hurston took her first steps when a wild hog entered her house and started chasing her! Kid Authors tells their stories and more—the diverse and inclusive cast that includes Roald Dahl, Beverly Cleary, J. K. Rowling, Sherman Alexie, Jules Verne, Lewis Carroll, Stan Lee—through kid-friendly texts and full-color cartoon illustrations on nearly every page.
I keep mentioning in my reviews how the world of non-fiction for kids seems to have exploded now. There are just so many wonderful non-fiction books that are just as magical and adventurous and imaginative as a made-up story.
When I was growing up, most of the biographies or life stories in general written for children seemed to be about kings and warriors, inventors, scientists. There was hardly any writing about … writers! As a child who had her nose firmly buried in books all day, I used to wonder endlessly about the lives of the people who transformed my world every day. The man who wrote Alice in Wonderland—surely his mind must have been a fascinating place? Didn’t Poe ever get spooked out by his own writing? And where on earth does Rowling get her ideas from? Just how much of the stories they write is inspired by their own lives?
KID AUTHORS by David Stabler takes the life story genre to a whole new fun level. The book basically features a bunch of true stories from the growing-up years of some of the world’s greatest writers. What were these writers like before they became household names? Well, mischief makers, math geniuses, local superheroes, shy bookworms, adventurers . . . some with regular kid problems, and some who had to worry about things like locust invasions!
While the stories do talk about the adversities, obstacles and challenges these writers faced as children, they are told in a humorous, light-hearted manner, and accompanied by funny, quirky illustrations. Each and every one of them though is hugely inspiring and thoroughly entertaining.
Is there anything that didn’t work for me? Of course not!