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Political Thriller Author Brad Meltzer Wants To Thrill Kids With History

Jun 11, 2014
Originally published on June 12, 2014 7:13 am

Brad Meltzer is known for writing political thrillers like “The Inner Circle” and hosting the History Channel series “Decoded.” But he’s also the author of “Ordinary People Change the World,” a series of children’s picture books.

Cover of

Illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulous, the books tell the stories of such famous Americans as Abraham Lincoln and Amelia Earhart — as children. Meltzer tells Here & Now’s Meghna Chakrabarti that the inspiration for the books came from his children.

“I just was tired of my own daughter looking at reality TV show stars and loudmouthed sports figures and thinking that’s a hero,” he said.

Brad Meltzer’s children are also his test audience. He has them read the books before they’re published, and he’s often struck by the messages that they take from the books. “I Am Rosa Parks,” the latest book in his series, helped his son when he was being bullied.

“I’m just blown away that to my young son, Rosa Parks is as vital as she was all those years ago, and she’s as alive today as she ever was, and that to me is the real goal of these books.”

Book Excerpt: ‘I Am Rosa Parks’

By Brad Meltzer

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Excerpted from the book I AM ROSA PARKS by Brad Meltzer. Copyright © 2014 by Brad Meltzer. Reprinted with permission of Dial.


  • Brad Meltzer, novelist, non-fiction writer, children’s book writer and host of “Brad Meltzer’s Decoded” on the History Channel. He tweets @bradmeltzer.
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