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I am Martin Luther King, Jr.

4.49  ·  Rating details ·  697 ratings  ·  125 reviews
We can all be heroes. That’s the inspiring message of this New York Times Bestselling picture book biography series from historian and author Brad Meltzer.
Even as a child, Martin Luther King, Jr. was shocked by the terrible and unfair way African-American people were treated. When he grew up, he decided to do something about it—peacefully, with powerful words. He helped g
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published January 5th 2016 by Dial Books
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Average rating 4.49  · 
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 ·  697 ratings  ·  125 reviews

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What a fantastic book. I enjoyed that the artist made MLK this little looking boy-man with a mustache the whole book. There was something relatable and powerful about that. No matter how small, we can still effect change.

I'll admit, I didn't know much about MLK's childhood. He had a white friend whose father made him stop playing with black kids. So sad, I mean all of what the segregation did to people was terrible. The separate schools was the worst, separate but equal was such a joke. I enjoye
Jon Nakapalau
I love this series! Well written (with just enough information) and fantastic art!
Feb 08, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I am Martin Luther King, Jr. is the latest offering in the Ordinary People Change the World book series for children by New York Times bestselling author Brad Meltzer and illustrator Christopher Eliopoulos. Each book in the Ordinary People Change the World series features one notable American (with the exception of Albert Einstein who was born in Germany but lived in the United States until his death). The individuals featured in the series are all "famous" and the reason for the notoriety varie ...more
Nafisah Khalil
Jun 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I really love this book. From how Martin Luther King Jr. was represented like a little boy who has a moustache. This makes him more relatable to children as he looks like them. This book enriched me of his life as a child. I didn’t know that he had a white friend, but he stopped playing with him, as his father stopped him playing with black children. This was one of the saddest part of the story. This is a great book for children to read, as it has lots of information and pictures.
Jan 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: civil-rights
Normally I wouldn't put a children's book on this list, but this series is so well done I couldn't help myself. Adults and students of all ages would benefit from this beautifully drawn book filled with outstanding historical information and packed full of great quotes from MLK'S most famous speeches.
Jenny Vegas
Jan 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: my-kids-fave
Reread this one every year with my kids they love it!
This is a great book and is very easy to understand for kids to learn about who Martin Luther King Jr was and what he did. I don't know what the recommended age for this book is but I'd say its best for ages 8 and up.
Kathryn Moore
Apr 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: elm-335-wow
I am Martin Luther King, Jr. is part of a collection of biographies that cover the lives of many famous people throughout history. In this book, Martin Luther King, Jr. tells the story of his childhood, how he became interested in civil rights, how he got involved in leading people to a fair society, and how laws were changed because of peaceful protests and speeches. I really enjoyed this book because it's a elementary friendly way to talk about inequality and segregation and makes the issue of ...more
Aaron Freeman
Feb 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: elm572-books
Meltzer, Brad. I am Martin Luther King, Jr. - Ordinary People Change the World
I thought Brad Meltzer did a magnificent job writing a beautiful, engaging, and yet fun story that teaches children how extraordinary Martin Luther King, Jr was. I starts off with how resilient he was as a kid. Every time he fell or got knocked down he always got back up. When his best friend tells him he can’t be friends anymore because their skin colors are different. Dr King he starts down a path to change the worl
Jan 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviews
I Am Martin Luther King, Jr is an absolutely wonderful picture book about a man who inspired so many.

Martin Luther King, Jr was such an incredible man who fought for fairness and equality among all people despite the color of their skin or their gender. Author Brad Meltzer does a beautiful job of creating a fun story that teaches children just how remarkable Martin Luther King, Jr was.

have to admit, although I am a mother of four and have helped my children research and write about Martin Luth
Feb 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Ordinary People Change World is a new biographical picture book series from Brad Meltzer, best known as a bestselling author of adult thrillers. Positive and inspiring for preschoolers. Christopher Eliopoulos’ cute illustrations just add another layer of appeal!

As the series progresses, I think the books just become better. Even when reading about someone familiar (Martin Luther King, Jr.), I learned something new and can't help but being amazed by the person I'm reading about. And, when I'm rea
Mary Ann
Jan 16, 2016 rated it liked it
While I like the way Meltzer grounds this biography in MLK's childhood, the text seems very wordy/long for a small, young-looking picture book. I'm also concerned about nonfiction written in the voice of MLK without actually using his words.
Tiffany Robinson
May 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was a great book. The illustrations were adorable and it told an important story well.
Catherine Mallard
Feb 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: wow-books
WOW! I think this biography should be read in every classroom in Grades 3-5, especially before Martin Luther King Jr. Day. This story documents MLK's life from start to finish, touching on every important event in and about his life that led to the change he brought to this world. In our Social Studies methods course, we have been speaking a lot about "change agents" and how that term better encompasses who we would usually call a "hero." By calling our heroes "change agents," we are recognizing ...more
Feb 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is part of the “Ordinary People Change the World” series, which highlights amazing actions done by many people for justice and kindness throughout history.

My kids and I have been reading a lot about Martin Luther King, Jr. over the past year, and they were thrilled that we’d get to read and review this book.

The narrative is a bit longer for a picture book, so this book (and series) is especially better suited for ages 5 and up. This book included a lot of information within its pages t
Melissa Kero
Feb 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
We love this entire series.
May 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-lit
1) Summary: This book is about the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It takes the reader back all the way to his childhood and shows how even when he was little he wanted to change the world. He goes on to change the nation through peaceful protesting. He is a man who never gave up and who never shied away from adversity.
2) Major Themes: The major themes of this story is perseverance, resilience, and equality.
3) Personal Response: I, as most people, very much admire Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Julie Esanu
First person (though not autobiographical) perspective of Martin Luther King's life from childhood through the Selma March. I have several concerns; one is the characterization of MLK--he's presented as a oddly-sized "man boy" who apparently does not age in appearance throughout the text. We first meet him as a young boy dressed in a black suit with a mustache; as he grows older he stature remains the same. At the end of the book, he is the size of child and other adults appear to overpower him. ...more
Dec 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I Am Martin Luther King Jr. Is a biography for children it’s intended audience is for children in grades PreK-2nd. This biography written by Brad Meltzer is about Martin Luther King Junior and the difficulty that he went through as a child it goes into detail about his first experience of being treated unfairly because he was black. The story goes on to explain that even as he grew up and had children they had to go through the same thing he’s out which made him work harder to change things.

Heather Armbruster
Oct 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I am Martin Luther King, Jr. by Brad Meltzer is one of the many books in the Ordinary People Change the World series. This book makes the perfect biography that can be read aloud to or read individually by grades kindergarten through third. This book is about the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. and how brave of a person he was for standing up and taking action for what he believed in. This book uses adorable illustrations and also provides a timeline of events in Martin Luther King, Jr.'s life. ...more
Eric Black
Dec 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children, biography
My daughter and I loved reading this book together tonight. Meltzer’s story of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is perfectly rendered to inspire a child, and the illustrations by Christopher Eliopoulos are excellent.

While reading I Am Martin Luther King, Jr., my daughter commented on all the wrongs and injustices experienced by King and fellow black men, women, and children. We talked about how things were and the importance of remembering those things and working to reverse them. She now wants to re
I really do just love this whole series of biographies.

MLK, Jr. turned out to be a but longer than some of the other titles in this series, but not surprising considering just how much he did in his lifetime. It was also a challenging day to get through any read aloud, my scheduled visit falling on Valentine's Day.

Our discussion afterwards involved the importance of the non-violent methods used during the Civil Rights Movement, and how money can be a big motivator for businesses to change polic
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids
Heroes come in all different shapes and sizes. They live in various places, and have over come a variety of different challenges. If we look closely, we can see they live all around us. Modern day heroes do exist. Sometimes the best heroes are the ones that make up our own modern day history.

"The time is always right to do right." - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King, Jr. is a hero I've always admired. His lessons on love, standing up for something you believe in, doing good, forgiving,
Aug 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone who loves learning about famous people
As with some of the other books in this wonderful series, I didn't know a lot about MLK Jr before I read this and even as an adult, I found it really interesting. It's written in a simple form that kids can understand but it's appealing to all ages. I learned quite a bit about this man and the things that he did. If you read "I am Rosa Parks" which is another wonderful book in this series, this MLK "version" parallels it, as some of the same topics (segregation and Rosa Parks herself) are mentio ...more
May 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am loving this series of picture book biographies! This one, in particular, shed new light on a notable figure I thought I already knew a lot about. Berry loved this one, too! I'd be reading another book and she'd reach for this one instead. <3 The best books (to me) are those that make you want to know more about the subject; after finishing this one I know I need to read the writings of Dr. King. His message of love over hate is a beautiful one and something I am excited to share with Berry ...more
Elle Markov
Oct 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This amazing book aimed at children around the ages of 4 to 6 covers the life of Martin Luther King Jr. I honestly think this is a must read for children. The book goes over some of the most important and memorable events occurring during Dr. King's life that to this day continue to be a source of inspiration.

Originally read this book in February of 2016 and I loved the way this book inspired a dialogue as the children asked questions about why Dr. King did the things he did and why he fought fo
Azra Hodzic
Jun 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: info-bio
A great informational book about MLK jr. if talks about his life and struggles during the civil rights movement. The illustrations go right along with the story line. A great book for an older child like 1st grade through 5th grade. I did introduce this book to preschoolers, I talked more about the pictures and gave them tidbits of the story. They enjoyed especially the picture of him falling down the stairs. They got a kick out of that.
Jaycie Fowlkes
Mar 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s-lit
This book tells the entirely true story of Martin Luther King, Jr., beginning with his childhood and ending with his success. Martin grew up very aware of the injustices against black people, and this sparked him to do something about it. He emphasized nonviolent resistance and began organizing bus boycotts, speeches, and marches. His words incited change, and people began gathering in large numbers to support this cause. Slowly but surely, the laws began to change. Despite the violence perpetra ...more
Jennifer Brown
Jan 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I am happy to live in a time when this man came first. I'm blessed to have many colored friends in my lifetime and it's sad to think that I wouldn't have had them had someone not fought for equal rights. MLK Jr was an amazing man. Just think what more he could've done had his life not been cut short!
Mr. Cody
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Little MLK with a mustache is hilarious
Darcy LeMaster
Nov 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I love the series of books from award winning author Brad Meltzer and illustrator Christopher Eliopoulos, Ordinary People Change the World. I am Martin Luther King, Jr., written from a first-person point of view, offers children a simple depiction of a dark time in US History, from an admirable man whose life was cut short. He tells his story, about the discrimination he faced as a young boy, the lessons he learned from his parents and how he decided to do something about it, in a peaceful way. ...more
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MLK's Top 5 Book Recommendations 1 1 Feb 21, 2018 02:41PM  

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Brad Meltzer is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Inner Circle, The Book of Fate, and nine other bestselling thrillers including The Tenth Justice, The First Counsel, The Millionaires, and The President’s Shadow. His newest book, The Escape Artist, debuted at #1 on the bestseller list.
In addition to his fiction, Brad is one of the only authors to ever have books on the bestseller lis

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