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155 book reviews found (page 1 of 31 pages). Narrow reviews by book audience:
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Book cover Freedom`s School
Lesa Cline-Ransome (2015) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by James E. Ransome
Audience: Primary (k-3rd grade), Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Multicultural, Realistic Fiction
(This book has outstanding illustrations)

Slavery has just ended. Lizzie and her younger brother, Paul, finally have the opportunity to go to school. Lizzie and Paul won’t be available to help their parents with the farm as much, but their parents are more concerned about their children getting a good education. After her first visit to the new school, Lizzie is very excited about going inside the small-framed building with the new fresh-cut wood, and meeting her teacher, Mizz Howard. At school she recognizes other children from her community. It saddens her that other students must stop going to school for periods of time to help out their families with the crops. When an unfortunate event causes great disappointment to Lizzie and her community is all hope lost?

Book cover My Name Is Truth
Ann Turner (2015) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by James Ransome
Audience: Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Biographies, Multicultural, Non-Fiction
(This book has outstanding illustrations)

Sojourner Truth, born Isabella Baumfree, was a courageous woman that spoke out against slavery and helped with the women’s rights movement. Unfortunately, she was born into a life of slavery, but that didn’t stop her from wanting a better life for herself and her family. As a free woman she went back to the South to rescue her son who was unlawfully sold into slavery. Her bravery and fierceness was admired by many. Her words spoke truth and she stood for justice and equality. Be inspired as you read this book about a woman’s journey of hope and freedom.

Book cover Brown Girl Dreaming
Jacqueline Woodson (2014) , 200+ pages
Audience: Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Award Books, Biographies, NCCBA

Written in verse, this award winning author tells her story about growing up in South Carolina and New York during the Civil Rights movement. Baby Jacqueline is born in 1963 in Ohio, but is soon moved to Greenville, SC, and eventually to New York City. Although she struggles to learn to read, Jacqueline loves to write and makes sense out of her life by telling stories. The poems will make you feel like you are right there with Jacqueline as she comes to find her place in the world. She moves through loss and separation, but also through joy, love, and belonging. Jacqueline Woodson won the National Book Award, the Coretta Scott King Book Award, and a Newbery Honor for this poetic memoir.

Reviewed by: Amanda / Matthews Library

Comments from Readers

Veda, age 9 from NC
This is a a WONDERFUL book!

Book cover Firebird
Misty Copeland (2014) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by Christopher Myers
Audience: Primary (k-3rd grade), Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Multicultural, Poetry, Read Aloud, Realistic Fiction
(This book has outstanding illustrations)

A young African-American dancer is feeling less confident about herself as she compares herself to the forever graceful ballerina, Misty Copeland. Her sadness is echoed through poetic words of hopelessness, but Misty Copeland assures the young dancer that she too can achieve great heights and soar as the Firebird. Colorful and dynamic illustrations capture the despair and hope of the story and send a powerful message that can breathe life into every aspiring dancer and person willing to live out their dreams.

Book cover The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond
Brenda Woods (2014) , 200+ pages
Audience: Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Multicultural, Realistic Fiction

Violet Diamond happens to be a biracial 11-year girl old living in Seattle. Sadly, Violet`s African- American dad died two months before she was born in a tragic car accident. She lives with her mom, who is Caucasian, in a predominantly white neighborhood. Violet has to deal with stereotypes, teasing and coming to terms with her own biracial identity as she enters the pre-teen world. This book delves into religion and race and brings up topics that could lead to very strong discussions about how we are defined and how we define ourselves.

Reviewed by: Viviette / Beatties Ford Road Library
Parental Notes

Comments from Readers

Ulonda, age 85 from NC
She has a lot of questions about family and race. Join Violet as she discovers more about herself, love, and family in `The Blossoming Universe of Violet Diamond.`

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