Henry Aaron's Dream
By Matt Tavares
Published 2010 by Candlewick Press
I am really into non-fiction picture books lately. Maybe it's because in school, one of my teachers stressed the importance of incorporating non-fiction into storytimes and these picture books are the perfect way to do so. Or maybe it's because you can learn so much in a short amount of space. Either way, if the non-fiction picture book is well done, I'm pretty much sold. Such is the case with this beautiful biography of baseball's home-run king (yes, he still is the home-run king, I don't care who Barry Bonds thinks he is) by the incredibly talented Tavares. This tells the tale of Aaron as a young child, enamored with America's pastime and how he wished to someday play in the big leagues. Of course, Aaron was watching when baseball (and most of America) was still segregated, so this dream seemed near impossible. But he never stopped believing and soon, he watched Jackie Robinson break the color barrier. This is a beautiful tribute to one of baseball's best players. Tavares' illustrations are lush and rich and easy to get lost in. I actually teared up while reading this (but maybe I'm just a big baseball softie). Highly recommended.