Two intrepid librarians

Two intrepid librarians review the best nonfiction books for children

Monday, December 17, 2012

Top Ten Biographies of 2012

Back in October we compiled a list of our favorite titles of 2012. Now that the year is coming to a close, we thought it would be the right time to share our favorite 2012 books by subject. Today we focus on biographies.

Top Ten Biographies of 2012 
(with links to our reviews)

We recognize that there are many more excellent titles that we didn't have a chance to review. Here are six more outstanding biographies from 2012.

Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass: the Story Behind an American Friendship by Russell Freedman
Bon Appetit!: The Delicious Life of Julia Child by Jessie Hartland
The Bronte Sisters: The Brief Lives of Charlotte, Emily, and Anne by Catherine Reef
Electric Ben: The Amazing Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin by Robert Byrd
Fifty Cents and a Dream: Young Booker T. Washington by Jabari Asim
Looking at Lincoln by Maira Kalman

Coming up next week... Our favorite math and science books of 2012.


  1. I'm so glad you listed The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind. The illustrator, Liz Zunon, illustrated our book, My Hands Sing the Blues, and I think she does such incredible work which truly enhances the words of the story.

  2. Brava to everyone listed here.
    Wishing more wonderful bios for young readers in 2013.
    Thank you! to Nonfiction Detectives .

    Jan Annino
    children's author

  3. An excellent list! Glad you included My Friend Dahmer, which was the best book I read all year, and which I hope to never have to read again...

    1. Hey, Sam. Yes, I agree about My Friend Dahmer. A truly incredible piece of writing that you only want to read once.

  4. It was an excellent year for bios! Temple Grandin was my favorite.

  5. I did like the Grandin. Can't think of too many biographies this year. Goodgraphic one of Helen Keller.