Cover image for Elvis is King!
Elvis is King!

Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Schwartz & Wade Books, [2019]
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : illustrations (some color) ; 29 cm
Presents the life and legacy of Elvis, from his birth in Mississippi through his music career, his time in the army, his marriage, and his induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
Personal Subject:
Added Corporate Author:
810L Lexile


Material Type
Call Number
Children's Book 782.42 WINTE

On Order

Apple Valley (Galaxie)1Received on 3/14/19
Burnsville (Burnhaven)1Received on 3/14/19
Eagan (Wescott)1Received on 3/14/19



Here's the perfect book for anyone who wants to introduce rock 'n' roll and its king to the child in their lives. In single- page "chapters" with titles like "The First Cheeseburger Ever Eaten by Elvis" and "Shazam! A Blond Boy Turns into a Black-Haired Teenager," readers can follow key moments in Presley's life, from his birth on the wrong side of the railroad tracks in the Deep South, to playing his first guitar in grade school, to being so nervous during a performance as a teenager that he starts shaking . . . and changes the world! Jonah Winter and Red Nose Studio have created a tour-de-force that captures a boy's loneliness and longing, along with the energy and excitement, passion, and raw talent that was Elvis Presley.

Author Notes

Children's author and illustrator Jonah Winter was born in Fort Worth, Texas in 1962. He has created many popular books, including works about baseball and biographies of famous individuals including Frida Kahlo, Roberto Clemente, and Barack Obama.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

Gr 3-5-Readers might know Elvis as the King of Rock and Roll, but will they know his dad spent 14 months in jail? Using short, titled stanzas, the author tells of Elvis's road to stardom, gracefully weaving together the highs and lows of a poor country boy rocketing to fame and riches. The illustrations were created using painted clay and repurposed objects and are almost more fascinating than the narrative. Each clay figurine expresses so much emotion-and no detail is left untouched. The cover gives some explanations regarding the art behind the illustrations and a video link will explain more for amazed and curious readers. An author's note that briefly discusses some cultural aspects of music at Elvis's time is included. This book has much to offer on many levels, from sparking curiosity through the original artwork to opening discussions about culture and music to providing a biographical view of an iconic musician. VERDICT Unique and artistic, this biography will not only entertain readers, but will also leave them with a deeper understanding of Elvis.-Emily Beasley, Omaha Public Schools © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

This picture book biography from the duo behind Here Comes the Garbage Barge! conveys the story of Elvis Presley's life, from crushing loneliness and poverty early on to his first #1 hit, "Heartbreak Hotel." Reality and fantasy blend together in the cinematically styled and lit compositions: when young Presley first hears gospel music coming from a rural African-American church "on a dusty road," the building seems to ascend to heaven on wings (an afterword delves further into his rise within the context of America's racial history). Wire, clay, and cloth sculptures by Red Nose Studio find an ideal subject in Presley's operatic emotions, jet black-dyed pompadour (depicted here in tidal wave proportions), and kinetic hip swiveling. Winter's text reads like blank verse and matches the images' emotional power on every page: "What would you do if you were just a poor country boy in the big city... What crazy plans might you concoct, lying in bed at night, listening to the freight trains passing by?"Ages 4-8. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

If the artwork in this seems a little in-your-face, it may be wise to remember that we're talking about the King here a figure known for large gestures, not for subtlety. Red Nose Studio, known for dramatic 3-D illustrations constructed from polymer clay figures and hand-built sets, teams up with award-winning author Winter to bring readers a portrait of Elvis, from his hard-scrabble beginnings in Tupelo, Mississippi, to his transformation into one of the first rock stars. The narrative is at times scattered, but the writing shines when Winter vividly describes Elvis' idiosyncratic, hip-shaking delivery, as if imbued with Elvis' own frenetic charisma. Winter also does well to acknowledge Elvis' cross-cultural musical lineage and his roots in southern gospel music. Dusty rural backdrops, skeletal trees, and battered fabric set the scene for Elvis' youth; no less derelict is the southern cityscape where he gets his big break. At once fantastical and overwhelmingly lonely: such is the story of Elvis. Overall, a vivid and imaginative take on an often-told rock 'n' roll legend.--Ada Wolin Copyright 2018 Booklist