For our PYP Unit "Every Life Has a Story," my students are reading biographies. I have a variety of texts available for book circles, will have kids watch biographies on www.brainpop.com, and everyone will read at least one "Who Was..." book, which is like mainlining a biography. One of my groups is going to read a variety of picture books.
When Marian Sang tells the life of Marian Anderson, a gifted singer who performed before an integrated crowd of 75,000 people at the Lincoln Memorial. I had never heard of Anderson before and know that my students won't have either. While the writing was fairly ordinary to me, the illustrations are gorgeous. The muted colors and attention to details had me savoring the pages. I don't know many small children who would enjoy this as a picture book, but in a study of biographies, it makes a great addition to a middle grade collection.