What Presidents Are Made Of by Hanoch Piven (Atheneum, $15.95). An artist who has created portraits for Time and Newsweek offers imaginative collage portraits of 17 American presidents in a witty picture book with appeal to adults and kids. George Washington was made of "good deeds"; Piven's portrait shows him fighting a fire, based on a true incident a few months before his death, when he dashed to a fire scene, jumped off his horse and started pumping water. Thomas Jefferson loved comfortable shoes and Piven shows him in bedroom slippers with a teddy bear. Andrew Jackson, famous for his hot temper, has bullets for eyes and a boxing glove for a nose. William Howard Taft, the heaviest president, is depicted in a bath tub with scales for eyes, feathers for his mustache. Nixon's face was created from a tape recorder with a curly black phone cord for hair and eyebrows. Ronald Reagan's portrait shows him with the chimpanzee from "Bedtime for Bonzo"; and the jelly beans he loved are used for his eyes, nose and mouth. Find portraits of all the presidents at the back of the book with the dates they served; it's amusing to notice how close Piven's weird collages come to the real thing.
My Brother's Side by Tiki and Ronde Barber with Robert Burleigh, illustrated by Barry Root (Simon & Schuster, $16.95). Ages 6 to 10. The twin NFL superstars offer a cute story about brotherly love and family togetherness inspired by the serious knee injury Tiki suffered in a bike accident as a kid. As always, Barry Root's illustrations are a marvel.