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Dolly Parton’s legendary story gets told like never before in an adorable new children’s book. Written by New York Times best-selling author Brad Meltzer and illustrated by Christopher Eliopolous, I Am Dolly Parton, spotlights the country music icon, author and reading advocate in an illustrated biography series that kids and adults can enjoy.
The children’s book was released on Tuesday (June 7), and is currently No. 1 on Amazon’s children’s women biographies list and No. 3 on the roster of new releases in children’s books. I Am Dolly Parton is part of the Ordinary People Change the World series, which is inspired by the PBS Kids TV show Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum, and encourages kids to dream big. The series includes children’s books on figures such as architect I.M. Pei, Oprah Winfrey, Martin Luther King Jr., Amelia Earhart, Lucille Ball, Jackie Robinson, Neil Armstrong, and Walt Disney.
As illustrated in I Am Dolly, Parton was born in a one-room cabin in on Pittman Center, Tenn. She was the fourth of 12 children born to Avie Lee Caroline and Robert Lee Parton Sr.
“I am Dolly Parton,” reads the first line in the book. “Once upon a time, on the coldest day of the year, in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee, a little girl was born in a one-room cabin. That girl was me! If that sounds like a fairy tale, you’ll see…my life sure does feel like one.”
Besides her childhood and country music career, I Am Dolly Parton illustrates Parton’s deep love for reading. “Books showed me a there was a world beyond the Smoky Mountains,” another passage in the book reads. The 40-page picture book is recommended for ages 5 to 9.
Parton has long been dedicated to literary advocacy and has sent more than 150 million free books to children through her book gifting organization Imagination Library. Parton also released her debut novel, Run, Rose Run, earlier in the year.