Literature For Kids

Rome and Romans

by Heather Amery & Patricia Vanags

For kids ages 8 and up. Take a trip back in time to the age of the Romans in this volume, designed both for children studying history for the first time and those investigating a particular interest. Detailed illustrations and an imaginary helmet should help them to recreate the past and imagine life as a Roman.

Leonardo: Beautiful Dreamer

by Robert Byrd

Famous in his time as a painter, prankster, and philosopher, Leonardo da Vinci was also a musician, sculptor, and engineer for dukes, popes, and kings. What remains of his work –from futuristic designs and scientific inquiry to artwork of ethereal beauty — reveals the ambitious, unpredictable brilliance of a visionary, and a timeless dreamer. Robert Byrd celebrates this passionate, playful genius in a glowing picture book replete with the richness and imagination of Leonardo’s own notebooks. Twenty lavish spreads, including side drawings, supplemental texts, and quotes from Leonardo’s writings, highlight distinct periods and make the master’s art, jokes, explorations, and inventions wonderfully vivid and accessible. A striking tribute to an irrepressible mind and to the potential within all who are curious.

Ice Mummy (Step-Into-Reading, Step 4)

by Mark Dubowski & Cathy East Dubowski

In 1991, two tourists hiking in the Alps saw something very odd sticking out of the snow. At first it looked like a doll’s head. But it wasn’t. It was a man, frozen in the ice for 5,000 years. Ice Mummy—first published by Random House in 1998—tells the story of this amazing discovery, from the struggle to remove the mummy from his icy grave to the creation of his final resting place: a specially designed refrigeration chamber in his own museum in Bolzano, Italy. Now updated to include shocking new evidence that the Iceman was murdered—shot with an arrow after hand-to-hand combat with an assailant—Ice Mummy will provide young readers with more chills than ever!

See Inside Ancient Rome

by Katie Daynes (Author) & David Hancock (Illustrator)

Amazon reader review: “Just had to add a few words about this book. It’s designed for young children so is completely appropriate for 5 yrs and up (if not younger.) All illustrations are ‘cartoon’ type but very accurately depict life in Roman times (since we are studying that era currently we are familiar with such.) The Roman bath scene shows many men rome-ing about (sorry, couldn’t resist) who are naked, however, only their buttocks show – again, in cartoon form. Very inoffensive. The Colosseum page shows a very tiny bit of blood under several very small, dead gladiators – all shown from a distance perspective. My 9 year-old daughter still loves to lift the flaps on books like these to discover what’s beneath so clearly it appeals to a broad range of children.”

Leonardo da Vinci for Kids: His Life and Ideas, 21 Activities

by Janis Herbert

The marriage of art and science is celebrated in this beautifully illustrated four-color biography and activity book. Kids will begin to understand the important discoveries that da Vinci made through inspiring activities like determining the launch angle of a catapult, sketching birds and other animals, creating a map, learning to look at a painting, and much more. Includes a glossary, bibliography, listing of pertinent museums and Web sites, a timeline, and many interesting sidebars.

Hello, Fruit Face!: The Paintings of Giuseppe Arcimboldo

by Claudia Strand

In the fantastic portraits of the 16th-century painter Giuseppe Arcimboldo, compositions of fruit, vegetables, flowers, books, animals or garden tools magically turn into vivid depictions of beautiful young women, weathered old men or the personifications of the seasons and elements. This book is one of a series of books for children which shows how Arcimboldo’s portraits made him a celebrated artist in court circles and a unique painter in the history of art.

Pinocchio (Penguin Classics)

by Carlo Collodi

The classic tale of literature’s most beloved puppet is retold in this lively, easy-to-read adaptation ideal for young and reluctant readers. Pinocchio, a lonely woodcarver’s naughty puppet, magically comes to life, runs away, and gets into a lot of trouble. The wooden hero tells lies, gets robbed by a sly cat and fox, and is swallowed by a hungry shark before he learns that good deeds, not bad, will help him to fulfill his dream of becoming a real boy.

Look Inside a Roman Town

By Conrad Mason (Author) & Alfredo Belli (Illustrator)

Children will love following the Flavius family as they go shopping, visit the baths and watch a thrilling chariot race in this informative book about life in an ancient Roman town. There are lots of scenes to explore and over 100 flaps to lift, revealing fascinating historical facts and delightful surprises, including flaps beneath flaps.

Italian Picture Word Book (Dover Children’s Language Activity Books)

by Hayward Cirker & Barbara Steadman

Amazon read review: “This is an excellent aid to development of Italian vocabulary. Although directed at children, it is useful for older students as well. The act of coloring in a figure while focusing on the word helps many people learn more easily.”

Ottavia e i Gatti di Roma – Octavia and the Cats of Rome: A bilingual picture book in Italian and English

by Claudia Cerulli & Leo Lätti (Illustrator)

An adventurous story of two cats who call the ancient monuments of Rome their home. Follow Octavia and Julius in their tour of the best-loved sights of the Eternal City, with stops at the Trevi Fountain, the Spanish Steps, the Coliseum, and the famed Mouth of Truth. Discover more about Rome and the sights mentioned in the story in the informative section at the end of the book. Use the location map to plan your own walking tour of Rome to see all the sights visited by the two cats and engage young children with a treasure hunt in the heart of Rome. The text in Italian with English translation on every page will help Italian language students learn new words and practice their reading skills. Those who love animals will enjoy this entertaining little adventure where two kittens are the bold protagonists.