I have read several of these books and enjoyed how he gave children of all color, religion and even disabilities heroes to look up to who mirrored them. Martin Luther King Jr, Albert Einstein, Helen Keller have been written about time and again, but Meltzer writes in a way that small children can relate to, and he shows them what it takes to be a hero.
Jim Henson has always been one of my heroes. He showed us the world through muppet colored glasses, and young and old responded with wonder. His muppets were silly and somewhat flawed, but they always believed. Whether they dreamed of scientific discoveries or chocolate chip cookies, these wonderful characters believed their dreams were attainable.
Brad Meltzer and Christopher Eliopoulos in I am Jim Henson (Ordinary People Change the World) do a marvelous job introducing young people to this man who died before they were born, but whose work entertains and reaches them every day. Henson's childhood shows where he might have picked up his sense of humor. The picture of his mom pouring milk all over the table because young Jim said "that's enough" instead of "when" as she was pouring milk into his morning cereal shows the reader the sillier side to growing up in the Henson household.
Eliopoulos' illustrations are recognizable and funny, as he portrays people and muppets to go along with Meltzer's descriptions of a life well spent. I imagine Henson would have loved the portrayal of a young Jim with a thick Henson-like beard. Meltzer's facts always seem to be on point, and young people will quickly understand that Henson was a dreamer who wanted to share his dreams with them.
Publisher - Dial Books
Date of Publication - January 10, 2017