Perfect Picture Book Friday – Jackie And The Mona Lisa PLUS A Giveaway!

It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday and I have a wonderful treat for you!

A great Perfect Picture Book, a little insight from the author, 3 fabulous activity pages, and the chance for one of you (US resident only) to win a copy of the book just by leaving a comment in the comment section below by Wednesday March 30 at 9PM Eastern!

I really enjoyed this book, so I hope you’ll like it too!

Title: Jackie And The Mona Lisa

Written By: Deborah Rovin Murphy

Illustrated By: Jen Brickling

Publisher: Sleeping Bear Press, March 15, 2022, nonfiction

Suitable For Ages: 6-8

Themes/Topics: American History, Jackie Kennedy, art appreciation

Opening: “Jackie Kennedy loved poetry. She loved dance and music. And she loved art. In 1961, Jackie became the First Lady of the United States. And everyone loved Jackie. More than that, everyone wanted to be just like her.”

Text copyright Debbie Rovin Murphy 2022, illustration copyright Jen Brickling 2022, Sleeping Bear Press

Brief Synopsis: From the publisher: “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.”

Text copyright Debbie Rovin Murphy 2022, illustration copyright Jen Brickling 2022, Sleeping Bear Press

Links To Resources: The back matter of the book has additional information about both Jackie Kennedy and the Mona Lisa. Please see below for some activity pages you can use with the book.

I asked Debbie what inspired her to write JACKIE AND THE MONA LISA, and she responded: “Growing up, art was always my favorite class. I teach second grade now (which I love) but had also dreamed about becoming an art teacher. This, combined with my love of history and museums, and my admiration of Jackie Kennedy, came together to inspire me to write Jackie and the Mona Lisa. Another reason for writing this particular story is my love for all of the “little known stories” in history or incredibly interesting stories that have been lost in time that I believe kids (and adults) would love to know. When I hear someone say that history is boring… I just think that they haven’t heard all of the interesting stories and anecdotes that correspond with all of the names, dates, and people we are taught to remember. I hope that this book can inspire children to go to museums and learn about the arts.”

A little bit about the author:

Author Debbie Rovin Murphy is a children’s book writer, teacher (of more than 25 years), and mother to two grown sons. She has loved visiting museums since her class trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art when she was in elementary school, and she was lucky enough to have seen the Mona Lisa on a trip to France. She lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

 Here are a few activity pages to use with the book:

Why I Like This Book: I found this book interesting, accessible, and engagingly written. I learned a lot about Jackie Kennedy’s time as First Lady and her passion for the arts. It was wonderful to have a glimpse of someone who seems so elegant searching through the White House basement! The story (without ever saying anything preachy!) clearly sends the message that if something is important to you, you can accomplish it if you put yourself into it. Young readers will really enjoy this book about everything Jackie Kennedy did for the arts in America.

Text copyright Debbie Rovin Murphy 2022, illustration copyright Jen Brickling 2022, Sleeping Bear Press

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do 😊

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

PPBF folks, please add your titles and post-specific blog links (and any other info you feel like filling out 😊) to the form below so we can all come see what fabulous picture books you’ve chosen to share this week!

Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! 😊 Don’t forget to leave a comment below by Wednesday March 30 at 9PM Eastern for your chance to be randomly selected to win a copy of this wonderful book! (US residents only – sorry!)

24 thoughts on “Perfect Picture Book Friday – Jackie And The Mona Lisa PLUS A Giveaway!

  1. authorlaurablog says:

    I saw this book and an interview with the author last week. I believe she said she got the idea from CBS Sunday Morning, which I watch regularly. I find it fascinating that the Mona Lisa came to the United States and look forward to reading this book.

  2. viviankirkfield says:

    I absolutely love the book…and the coloring pages are fabulous…and the Jackie cut out doll and clothes – incredible!!! Thanks for a great review, Susanna…and thank you, Debbie, for showing how ideas are everywhere and we need to be ready.

  3. cathystenquist says:

    Really gets me thinking about how ideas are everywhere. Love the illustrations and such a clever topic. Thanks Susanna!

  4. Lindsay Moretti says:

    I love reading about the lost “little” moments in history that made such a profound impact on society, and really love how Jackie took advantage of her position to creatively push the arts. Looking forward to reading this and using the fun activities with my kiddos!

  5. rosecappelli says:

    This book brought back so many memories! I was one of those little girls who wanted to be just like Jackie, and although I remember watching the White House tour on television, I never knew about the Mona Lisa coming to the U.S. Looking forward to reading all of this book!

  6. Kim A Larson says:

    I can’t think of a more fitting combination of Jackie and Mona. I can’t wait to read the book! Congratulations, Debbie! What a wonderful idea for a story!

  7. Patricia Tilton says:

    Looking forward to reading this book. Saw an interview with Debbie last week and enjoyed learning about her journey with Jackie Kennedy’s work with the arts. Didn’t know that it was Jackie who brought the Mona Lisa to the US. Love this story!

  8. Jilanne Hoffmann says:

    Everything I know about Jackie O, is tainted by seeing the replay and aftermath of JFK’s assassination. I think I was three or four, and watching the news on our B&W TV. And then she became the fixation of many when she married Onassis. Talk about having a privileged and tragic life. And then she became an editor! So interesting to see the many paths a person’s life can take. And one of these was as a champion of the arts. Fascinating!

  9. Jessica Milo says:

    I am excited to read this book and learn more about Jackie and the Mona Lisa! I love going to art museums so this is up my alley!! Love all that Jackie did for the arts!

  10. Sue Heavenrich says:

    What a great topic – and I just love the paper doll! Because, yes, we all DID want to wear those elegant clothes like Jackie. I wish I had been able to see the Mona Lisa – what a wonderful experience for people who were able to visit her.

  11. kellyclasenwriter says:

    I look forward to reading this book and learning more about the former first lady myself–though I’ll share it with the kiddo, of course! She’ll also like the paper dolls very much. Thank you!

  12. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Supports for the arts wax and wane, and this is such a lovely spotlight about their importance and a luminous and beloved First Lady. Thank you.
    I really enjoyed learning about the book, and it reminded me of a story I just saw on the news regarding the Freedom Train, a seven car train with flags and documents from the National Archives that traveled the country, bringing history to the country. Remarkable.

  13. Danielle Hammelef says:

    I know so very little about Jackie and this book does sound fun to read as I learn. I too enjoy the mental picture of a first lady searching the White House basement.

  14. seschipper says:

    Susanna thanks so much for sharing this for PPBF! I have always admired Jackie Kennedy. She was a shining star and added so much charm to the title First Lady! Looking forward to adding this book to our collection ( I also remember loving “cut-outs as a little girl! 🙂

  15. Judy Sobanski says:

    Susanna, thanks for the wonderful interview. Debbie, I love that you found this interesting story to tell about Jackie Kennedy. Museums are amazing places and I hope kids who read your book will want to visit museums and discover all they have to offer.

  16. davidbarker109 says:

    This book was fantastic to read! I had never known much about Jackie Kennedy’s life, but this book changed everything. Her impact on the world was so significant that I believe it should be studied more in classrooms.

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