Thursday, August 12, 2010

Humorous Abe

Here’s a new side to Abraham Lincoln, one you might not know even if your book shelves are like mine and groan from the weight of books about our 16th president.

LINCOLN TELLS A JOKE: How laughter Saved the President (and the Country) by Kathleen Krull and Paul Brewer, illustrated by Stacy Innerst, Harcourt Children’s Books, 2010

There’s always a new way to interest young readers in history, especially if a creative parent, teacher, or writer will spend time and effort to search for it and delight us with the results.

Kathleen Krull has that kind of creativity, sure to tickle your funny bone while history sneaks up on you. Her series, Lives of...(the Musicians, Writers, others) and What the Neighbors Thought is like that. Kids love the inside jokes and don’t realize they are absorbing the outside facts at the same time. She’s applied her talents to our venerable president, too.

Krull’s husband and co-writer, Paul Brewer, surely added mirth to the mix. He’s an avid joke collector and has written volumes of jokes and puzzles for kids.

Illustrator Stacy Innerst’s painting of the Lincoln Memorial will tempt tourists to go back for a second look. Is Lincoln reading a book of jests? Is he smiling?

It’s National Smile Week. Honest Abe couldn’t resist joining in.


  1. Yay for using humor to get kids excited about history!

  2. Abe had me laughing this week when I found this quote by him.

    "If I were two faced, would I be wearing this one?"

    Thanks for this book alert! Very timely. I'll include it in my August issue of TALKING STORY enewsletter which focuses on Humor in the Classroom.

  3. Thanks Vicky and Joyce. You two know a thing or a jillion and two about making history fun.


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