This winter KPL has invited everyone to take part in a Winter Reading Challenge, and I hope everyone will! I needed a book for the second reading activity: Read about a topic you don't know much about. I thought I knew some things about magicians and how they do tricks, but I realized how little I knew about the history of magicians when I came across Anything but ordinary Addie: the true story of Adelaide Herrmann, the Queen of Magic. This new biography picture book for children is FANTASTIC! It is about the life of Adelaide Herrmann who was a "shocking" and "dazzling" magician during a time when being a female magician was unheard of.
I am always excited to see little known facts about women's contributions to history come to light, especially in a children's book. As a young girl, Adelaide knew she wanted to be different and she wanted to do things not expected of a young girl growing up during the Victorian era. What better way to shock society than to grow up and become a magician, get shot out of a cannon, be set on fire, or have your head cut off. The full color illustrations in this book are vibrant and powerful; they bring the pages to life. The author Mara Rockliff has written a simple, easy flowing story that will engage anyone reading it. I recommend this as a must read for elementary school kids and preschoolers will definitely enjoy the wonderful illustrations.