Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Bob Raczka  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction Illustrator Non-Fiction Poetry

Audience: Children;

Born: 1963 in Chicago, Illinois

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Illinois Connection

Raczka was born in Chicago and raised in DesPlaines. He currently resides in Glen Ellyn.

Biographical and Professional Information

Bob Raczka is a children’s author and poet who has written and illustrated several picture books about art and poetry. He attended the University of Illinois and majored in Graphic Design. After working for ten years in the advertising business he turned to writing children's books, by sharing his enthusiasm for fine art through books and talks with younger children.


'Guyku '

Kentucky Bluegrass Award

Starred Review. School Library Journal

ILLINOIS READS Book, Illinois Reading Council, 2014

The Vermeer Interviews




Where in the World

Junior Literary Guild Selection

Fall Mixed Up

Junior Literary Guild Selection

'Lemonade '

NOTABLE BOOK, American Library Association


Starred Review, Booklist

'Santa Clauses '

Junior Literary Guild SELECTION


Starred Review, Kirkus

Starred Review, Publishers Weekly

'Wet Cement '

Best Books of the Year, Kirkus

Starred Review, Kirkus

Starred Review, Publishers Weekly

Starred Review, School Library Journal

Starred Review, Bulletin of the Center for Childrens Books


Starred Review, School Library Journal

ILLINOIS READS Book Selection, Illinois Reading Council, 2020

Unlikely Pairs

Junior Literary Guild Selection

Art Is ...


No One Saw

CHILDREN'S BOOK AWARD, Illinois Library Association

TEACHER'S CHOICE, Illinois Library Association

Niko Draws a Feeling





Junior Literary Guild SELECTION

Starred Review, School Library Journal

Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)

Selected Titles At Your Library

3-D ABC :
ISBN: 0761394567. OCLC Number: 60375383

Millbrook Press,. .

Learn the alphabet by looking at very unusual sculptures.

Action figures :
ISBN: 0761341722. OCLC Number: 288932983

Millbrook Press,. .

These eighteen paintings by Raczka cover a wide range of times, places, and artistic styles.

Art is- /
ISBN: 0761318321. OCLC Number: 50291026

Millbrook Press,. .

Rhyming text and photographs show that art is much more than just what can be hung on a wall or set on a pedestal.

Artful reading /
ISBN: 1580138802. OCLC Number: 74029396

Millbrook Press,. .

Introduces art works that feature people reading.

Before they were famous :
ISBN: 0761373004. OCLC Number: 470361149

. .

This book focuses on the childhood works of seven artists, with lots of interesting facts about who or what influenced them when they were children and young adults. Three works from each artist are included, showing how their style developed and changed over time.

ISBN: 1580896839. OCLC Number:

Charlesbridge. .

A cautionary tale using words made up of only the five letters in the title (B, E, W, A, and R). Can a bear and a bee become friends?

Abe and Bree aren't supposed to get along. When they meet, they panic. Abe swats! Bree stings! Now they're both hurt. Together they figure out how to find friendship despite differences and preconceived notions. This rare-bear, wee-bee tale helps to create a web of understanding with unique language and a clever structure.

Fall mixed up
ISBN: 9780545510257. OCLC Number: 825107329

Scholastic,. .

The delights of autumn are described in mixed-up verse and illustrations, and the reader is challenged to uncover the errors.

Guyku :
ISBN: 132886930X. OCLC Number: 474871347

Houghton Mifflin Books for Children,. .

Raczka and Reynolds present a humorous haiku collection perfect for guys (big and small) that celebrates outdoor fun throughout the seasons.

Here's looking at me :
ISBN: 9780822573050. OCLC Number: 58431664

Millbrook Press,. .

Fourteen famous artists' self-portraits illustrating their different styles and views of themselves.

Joy in Mudville /
ISBN: 0761360158. OCLC Number: 844789828

. .

The day after Mighty Casey's strikeout, the Mudville Nine are in a crucial game when a relief pitcher--a girl--is sent in and quickly proves herself to the crowd using moves from football, tennis, and soccer.

Lemonade, and other poems squeezed from a single word /
ISBN: 1596435410. OCLC Number: 642510979

Roaring Brook Press,. .

Part anagram, part rebus, part riddle - this brand new poetic form turns word puzzles into poetry.

Like best friends /
ISBN: 1944903887. OCLC Number: 1148120165

. .

This book, which introduces children to similes, focuses on a boy on a boring summer day who, while exploring, meets a girl on a swing.

More than meets the eye :
ISBN: 0761319948. OCLC Number: 51554038

. .

Provides images of paintings and new, sensory ways to experience them, such as tasting the milk in Vermeer's "The Milkmaid," hearing the music in Tanner's "The Banjo Lesson," or feeling the fur in da Vinci's "Lady with an Ermine."

Name that style :
ISBN: 1580138241. OCLC Number: 189700201

Millbrook Press,. .

Learn about fourteen different artists and their different styles.

New York is my playground
ISBN: 9781576877890. OCLC Number: 918282087

. .

This book shows children how New York's streets, structures, and landmarks can provide a unique playspace.

Niko draws a feeling /
ISBN: 1467798436. OCLC Number: 948960685

. .

"No one understands the abstract pictures that Niko draws until a new friend sees the thought and feeling within his shapes and forms"--

No one saw :
ISBN: 0761316485. OCLC Number: 46314827

Millbrook Press,. .

Reproductions of famous paintings-from the art of Georgia O'Keeffe to Paul Klee-combine with simple texts to introduce children to the unique visions of individual artists and encourage them to experience art with all their senses.

Presidential misadventures :
ISBN: 9781596439801. OCLC Number: 890912409

. .

A book of poetry about the presidents written in clerihews--

Santa Clauses :
ISBN: 146771805X. OCLC Number: 855909922

. .

Twenty-five haiku give readers a fresh, humorous perspective on Santa's December preparations, and rich illustrations pull readers into every wintry scene.

Snowy, blowy winter /
ISBN: 0807575267. OCLC Number: 191846392

Albert Whitman & Co.,. .

Illustrations and simple rhyming text portray winter activities, from snowman-building, sledding, and sitting by a fire to feeding birds.

Speaking of art :
ISBN: 0761350543. OCLC Number: 387790208

Millbrook Press,. .

Art lover Bob Raczka pairs thought-provoking (and sometimes funny) quotes by famous painters with colorful examples of their best work. From Edgar Degas' The Rehearsal (1878-79) to Georgia O'Keeffe's Evening Star, No. III (1917) to Romare Bearden's Family (1986), you'll discover the works--and the wisdom--of eighteen artistic masters.

Spring things /
ISBN: 0807575968. OCLC Number: 71004004

Albert Whitman,. .

Winter melts into spring with the sights and sounds of hopping and skipping, sowing and mowing, and blading and lemonading.

Summer wonders /
ISBN: 0807576530. OCLC Number: 243960469

Albert Whitman,. .

Illustrations and rhyming text celebrate the sights and sounds of summer, from days of diving and swimming to nights of stargazing and fireflies.

The art of freedom :
ISBN: 1580138810. OCLC Number: 144570859

Millbrook Press,. .

What is America? Shape a fascinating image of the United States through the eyes of eighteen artists who have painted, sculpted, and photographed the U.S. landscape and culture.

The Poet Wolf of Piney Woods
ISBN: 195183609X. OCLC Number:

. .

The Vermeer interviews :
ISBN: 1580138829. OCLC Number: 231032168

. .

In this look at seven paintings by Jan Vermeer, author Bob Raczka takes on the role of interviewer and the people in the paintings become his willing subjects.

Unlikely pairs :
ISBN: 0761323783. OCLC Number: 52750063

Millbrook Press,. .

Invites the reader to look at twenty-six paintings from different eras and styles presented in pairs. Each pair lends itself to a story the reader can discover by looking at the paintings in a new way.

Wet cement :
ISBN: 9781626722361. OCLC Number: 904081803

. .

Who says words need to be concrete? This collection shapes poems in surprising and delightful ways. Concrete poetry is a perennially popular poetic form because they are fun to look at. But by using the arrangement of the words on the page to convey the meaning of the poem, concrete or shape poems are also easy to write! From the author of the incredibly inventive Lemonade: And Other Poems Squeezed from a Single Word comes another clever collection that shows kids how to look at words and poetry in a whole new way--

Where in the world? :
ISBN: 082256372X. OCLC Number: 68373406

Millbrook Press,. .

Pay a virtual visit to thirteen different places and times via thirteen works of art.

Who loves the fall? /
ISBN: 0807590371. OCLC Number: 79860341

Albert Whitman,. .

Rhyming text and illustrations portray the sights and sounds of autumn, from "rakers, leapers, and corn crop reapers" to "trickers, treaters, and turkey eaters."