Gr 3–6—This picture book takes a look at Robert Miller, a successful con man who managed to dupe many and by posing as a government official was even able to "sell" the Eiffel Tower to scrap metal dealers, before being caught and imprisoned. Miller used more than 45 aliases during his life but was known to many as Tricky Vic.
This is a fascinating story, with quirky, retro-style, mixed-media art that will appeal to readers. Beyond a line or two at the beginning about Vic turning to a life of crime, Pizzoli doesn't moralize about his subject's actions. Tricky Vic is a little-known subject, and some may wonder if there's an audience for this title. However, this is an intriguing account, and through sidebars, the book offers some effective avenues for discussing related historical events, people, and places, such as Al Capone, Prohibition, counterfeiting, and Alcatraz.
An attractive, though esoteric, offering.
—Dorcas Hand, Annunciation Orthodox School, Houston, TX
ReviewSelected for The New York Times ten Best Illustrated Children's Books of 2015
Selected for Amazon's Best Books of the Year list
Selected for the American Library Association's Notable Children's Books List
"Splendid. . . . Loaded with facts but with good storytelling and high-level illustration. . . . I’m thrilled that Pizzoli has chosen to present [Tricky Vic's] story so compellingly to our nation’s children."--The New York Times
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