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Jackie and the Mona Lisa

Jackie Kennedy loved the arts. And America loved Jackie Kennedy. The first lady knew she had the country's attention--what would she do with it? Encourage Americans to appreciate art, of course! She turned the White House into a historical site filled with some of America's most treasured artifacts and pieces of art. She brought Shakespearean theater to the White House and ballerinas to the South Lawn. And most epically, she brought the Mona Lisa to the states (much to the chagrin of many Parisians) to encourage Americans to visit museums--and it worked! An inspiring story about one of the nation's most influential first ladies.

Format List Price Your Price Qty
$17.99 $17.99
$28.99 $28.99
Interest Level Grade 1 - Grade 4
Reading Level Grade 2
Dewey 759.5
Lexile 770L
ATOS Reading Level
Guided Reading Level Q
Language English
Publisher Sleeping Bear Press
Available Formats Hardcover (9781534111172), PDF (9781534197992), Hosted ebook (9781534198012)
Copyright 2022
Number of Pages 40
Dimensions 9 x 11
Graphics Full-color illustrations, Historical photographs

Kirkus Reviews: Jackie and the Mona Lisa

“Bricking’s soft watercolor illustrations evoke nostalgia and skillfully bring the historical period to life. Murphy succeeds in showing how the new, youthful first lady, schooled in the arts and admired by the American public for her fashion style and French affiliation, exerted a huge influence on U.S. culture.”

Booklist - Jackie and the Mona Lisa

“This ‘little known story of the sway, style, and persistence of America’s favorite First Lady’ certainly delivers…Murphy’s upbeat, hopeful tale of a puzzlingly obscure story is matched here by Bricking’s saturated watercolors, reminiscent of the style of Eloise but showing Jackie, the White House, and—especially charming—the French public’s expressions of horror when a voyage is proposed for their dainty treasure.

A must for schools and public libraries.”

School Library Journal - Jackie and the Mona Lisa

“This book may well inspire museum visits; a delightful addition to public or elementary school shelves.”

Publishers Weekly - Jackie and the Mona Lisa

This narrative nonfiction tale spotlights Jacqueline Lee Kennedy Onassis (1929–1994), her filling the White House with historically significant furniture to make “a living museum,” and efforts to inspire the public with art—particularly when she negotiated a 1963 loan of the Mona Lisa to museums in Washington, D.C., and New York City. Murphy narrates simply, with an attention to detail that will please young fact finders: “The Mona Lisa was placed in a bulletproof and waterproof container that could even float if the ship sank!” Bricking’s slender, thin-lined figures of varying ages, abilities, and skin tones, rendered in a cool palette, have a cartoonish bent in this straightforward, art-centered profile of a beloved first lady. Back matter includes more about Onassis and the Mona Lisa.

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Author: Debbie Rovin Murphy

Debbie Rovin Murphy is a children’s book writer, teacher (of more than 25 years), and mother to two grown sons. She lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Illustrator: Jen Bricking

Jen Bricking is a children’s book illustrator and a concept artist for video games. She likes to explore the Pacific Northwest and beyond. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

Full-color illustrations, Historical photographs