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Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Missing DJ. Former library copy with stamps and stickers. No highlighting/underlining, pages are clean and unmarked. Wear to the exterior.
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Looking at Lincoln Hardcover – January 5, 2012

24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 3—In this personable presentation, a young girl passes a man on the street who looks like Abraham Lincoln. The encounter makes her wonder about that great president and she heads to the library to find out more. This accessible, brief introduction to the 16th president is told from the child's perspective as though she is sharing what she discovered in her research. Including highlights from Lincoln's childhood, his love of debate, his concern over the war, and his family, this is both an informational overview and a childlike imagining of the president. Reader Elizabeth Cottle does an excellent job with her pacing, capturing both the emotional wonderings of the child telling the story and the fascinating details shared from Lincoln's life. VERDICT Young children who are just being introduced to President Lincoln will find this to be a satisfying, fulfilling beginning that may lead to more investigation into the life of this inspiring man.—Deanna Romriell, Salt Lake City Public Library, UT --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From Booklist

Just what is Abraham Lincoln’s legacy? In this intimate portrait, a young girl walking in the park passes a man who looks like Lincoln, heads to the library, and dives into research so compelling that she has to share it with us. What follows is an account that hits the familiar notes, embellished with circular, childlike wonderings. We all know about Lincoln’s wife and family. But our narrator wonders if they had nicknames for one another. We know he was consumed with the fight for freedom and justice. But our narrator wonders if he thought about what to get his little son for his birthday, too. The facts are laid out in an austere black typeface and the wonderings in loose, hand-lettered script, with certain words in color for emphasis. Kalman’s primitive polychrome illustrations marry the two narratives into a meaningful whole, combining unexpected color choice and sophisticated composition for powerful emotional impact. Comprehensive endnotes fill in more facts and cite sources, but this is as much a personal impression of Lincoln’s legacy as an informational biography. Grades K-3. --Thom Barthelmess

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 480L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Nancy Paulsen Books; First Edition edition (January 5, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039924039X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399240393
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 0.4 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #82,540 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Maira Kalman is an illustrator, author, and designer. She has created many covers for The New Yorker, including the famous map of Newyorkistan (created with Rick Meyerowitz). Ms. Kalman's twelve children's books include Max Makes a Million, Stay Up Late, Swami on Rye, and What Pete Ate. She also has designed fabric for Isaac Mizrahi, accessories for Kate Spade, sets for the Mark Morris Dance Company, and, with her late husband Tibor Kalman under the M&Co. label, clocks, umbrellas, and other accessories for the Museum of Modern Art. Ms. Kalman's work is shown at the Julie Saul Gallery in Manhattan.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
My daughter (who turns four this week) is very "into" the presidents, and Lincoln is one of her favorites. I've really struggled to find age-appropriate books about him, because it's impossible to discuss his presidency without bringing in slavery, the Civil War and his assassination.

This book is the closest that I've found, and she loves it. We've been reading it at bedtime for about two weeks now!

I do censor it a bit. I've decided I can't explain away enough of the illustrations to not sort of explain slavery "Some white people were being really mean and making some black people, and making them work really, really hard and they didn't pay them any money, and didn't let them do what they wanted" but I skip the part about dead soldiers and in my version "President Lincoln died" but I don't even touch on how it happened (I literally turn 2 pages together to avoid explaining the picture of the pistol.

That said, I've been able to gently introduce the information, and when we she sees the picture of the slaves, or the soldiers, she says, "I wouldn't want to be one of those guys!" (slaves, Confederate soldiers) or "I would want to be those guys!" (Union soldiers) "Because slavery was MEAN!"

Last night, I got her up to go to the bathroom, she did her thing still mostly asleep, and as she stood up, she opened her eyes and said, "Abraham Lincoln said 'If slavery is not wrong, nothing is wrong!' Abraham Lincoln said, 'Enough!'"

We live near Gettysburg, PA, so I'm trying to find opportunity to visit when there's some sort of Lincoln reenactment going on, so she can have the opportunity to "look at Lincoln" herself.

I would highly recommend this book for any preschooler who would like to learn more about President Lincoln.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By L. Sanchez on August 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Our bedtime book a week ago was Looking and Lincoln. It's a great picture book that somehow manages to tackle Lincoln's legacy - and tragedy - in a kid friendly way. It helps that the illustrations are bright and crude and unpretentious: it's so much fun to look at and it makes the subject matter more accessible to youngsters. That said, my toddler (age 3) and I still had a heavy bedtime conversation about slavery, bigotry, war, death, and our collective and individual obligation to do the right thing.

Looking at Lincoln is an excellent resource for those who would like to teach their young children about history and how it shapes and informs the present.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Patricia N. Earle on February 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Book handles subjects of slavery, the Civil War, and Lincoln's Assassination in words and concepts easy for that age to comprehend
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By M. Heiss on May 20, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The illustrations in this book blow my doors off. They grab the interest and the eyeballs of young readers and listeners -- big visual impact.

This is a great book on Lincoln for the early grades, especially if you explore the Notes section and endpapers. Contains the text of the Gettysburg Address, which my kids memorized this year.

We are in a golden age of children's book publishing. More like this, please.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Deborah Freedman on August 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The life of Abraham Lincoln, through the wondering eyes of Maira Kalman.

"On the day he was elected I bet Mary made his favorite Vanilla Cake. But maybe he forgot to eat his slice. He was often to busy thinking to eat."

On the left-hand page, a big slice of cake; on the right, a top hat. So, from this we have a witty take on Mary and Lincoln's relationship, what they liked to eat, and the fact that Lincoln was a deeply meditative man -- a point simply illustrated by "a very tall hat", that he stuffed with the many notes he wrote. And then Kalman segues into, "What was he thinking about?"

The book is full of essential facts about Lincoln, but they certainly don't "feel" like facts when they are presented simply as curious questions and straightforward answers. Kalman's words and pictures combined become especially powerful as they move towards the "terrible things that happen in a war" -- illustrated by a jacket with a hole and a button missing over the heart, and then, a grave marker with only a number on it. The last few spreads, about the end of Lincoln's life, are so profoundly moving... you just have to see them for yourself.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Librarian Laura on April 19, 2013
Format: Hardcover
What a fantastic book!
I love Lincoln, and this book captures what he stood for in a beautiful way. The young girl's fascination with him personalizes this biography.
The pictures are vivid, and even the font adds to the greatness of the book.
This book is on the Texas Bluebonnet List for next year, and I hope the kids like it as much as I do.
And I hope they'll follow the narrator's urging and really look at him....and this book is a terrific start.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By LizP on February 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The narrator of this book about Abraham Lincoln is fascinated by his face. She wants to learn as much as she can about Lincoln. She learns the well-known facts such as his poverty as a child, his honesty and the difficulties of his presidency. Whimsy also has a place. She imagines that on the day Lincoln was elected president his wife made him his favorite vanilla cake. She wonders if Lincoln and his wife had nicknames for each other. While Lincoln was thinking deep thoughts about the United States and about democracy, she imagines that he also thought about getting a birthday present for his son. An illustration of the uniform of one of the first soldiers killed in the Civil War brings out one of the most serious commentaries. There's also a shockingly serious commentary above the pistol with which Lincoln was killed.

It seems as if the narrator, in her commentaries, is attempting to humanize Lincoln for herself. This is a very difficult task for a textbook to accomplish. This book has text book information, but it also has the commentaries, so Lincoln becomes the narrator's picture of a vital, living person rather than just "the 16th president."
The facts of the book are printed in typeface. The narrator's commentaries are, in a very readable print/cursive combination. Some of the words in the commentaries are brightly colored for emphasis.

The illustrations add color and emotional depth to the book. One of the funnier illustrations shows a mule wearing a hat and looking recalcitrant on the lower right, and two legs flying off the ground in the upper left. This illustrates Lincoln being kicked in the head by a mule. The illustration of the time of mourning following Lincoln's death is a two-page spread using dark blue and black and gray and white.
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