cover image Abe Lincoln: His Wit and Wisdom from A–Z

Abe Lincoln: His Wit and Wisdom from A–Z

Alan Schroeder, illus. by John O’Brien. Holiday House, $17.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8234-2420-7

In a droll companion to a similarly alphabetic title about Benjamin Franklin, Schroeder provides an overview of the 16th president’s legacy, his predilections, and some significant events of his era. Each letter introduces several ideas: U stands for union, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and unfinished (“When Lincoln became president in 1861, the Capitol building and the Washington Monument were still unfinished,” the explanation reads). O’Brien’s ink-and-watercolor art has a farcical sensibility that plays on the mythology surrounding Lincoln. In one image, he boosts a large chicken house over his head, chickens and all: “Lincoln was surprisingly strong. One friend in Indiana recalled seeing him ‘carry a chicken house... that weighed at least six hundred pounds.’ ” With quotations from Lincoln incorporated throughout, it’s an amusing and educational portrait of Honest Abe. Ages 6–10. (Feb.)