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241 book reviews found (page 4 of 49 pages). Narrow reviews by book audience:
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Book cover Sugar
Jewell Parker Rhodes (2013) , 200+ pages
Audience: Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Historical, Multicultural, Realistic Fiction


Ten-year old Sugar was named for the sugar cane she harvests on River Road Plantation. Mischievous and strong-willed, Sugar would rather spend her days exploring the Mississippi River with her best friend Billy than working. It doesn’t matter to her that Billy is the son of the plantation owner or that she has been forbidden to see him. In 1870, slavery has ended, and Sugar has big dreams for the future. When Chinese workers arrive to help harvest, the other workers are intimidated. Can Sugar’s curiosity, compassion, and humor bridge the distance between the three distinct cultures on the plantation? This heart-warming story gives a unique look at an important time in American history while delivering an encouraging message about the power of friendship.

Reviewed by: Rene / ImaginOn

Book cover The Cart That Carried Martin
Eve Bunting (2013) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by Don Tate
Audience: Primary (k-3rd grade), Intermediate (4th-6th grade), Adult/Parent
Category: African-American, Multicultural, NCCBA, Non-Fiction, Read Aloud
(This book has outstanding illustrations)


Sometimes a single object can be so meaningful that it deserves a place in a museum to be recognized for bearing witness to an important historical event. With poetic language and soft watercolor illustrations, this unique biography tells the story of a humble wooden cart, borrowed from an antiques store and pulled through the streets of Atlanta by a pair of farm mules. It was an ordinary cart used for the funeral of an extraordinary man. By focusing on one detail such as the cart, author Eve Bunting provides a clear and somber snapshot of an intense and emotional day, but also reveals a lot about Martin Luther King, Jr.’s philosophy and teachings.

Reviewed by: Rene / ImaginOn

Book cover This is the Rope: A Story From the Great Migration
Jacqueline Woodson (2013) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by James Ransome
Audience: Primary (k-3rd grade)
Category: African-American, Historical, Multicultural, NCCBA, Read Aloud, Realistic Fiction
(This book has outstanding illustrations)


A young girl tells the history of a rope that has been used in her family for many generations during the Great Migration period, which started around the early 1900s. At that time many African Americans moved away from the South to the northern states for a better way of life. The story begins with her grandmother finding the rope that she uses for a skipping game. When her grandmother grew up and started a family of her own that same rope travelled with them all the way to New York City. This rope served many purposes and lots of memories surround it. The superb oil painted pictures bring together priceless family history that show how this rope was there through it all.


Comments from Readers

Ajani, age 10 from North Carolina
I liked that book because it was talking about how they use the rope every year or every day like a family tradition and how they used it over and over and kept it for all those years.


Book cover When The Beat Was Born : DJ Kool Herc and the Creation of Hip Hop
Laban Carrick Hill (2013) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by Theodore Taylor III
Audience: Intermediate (4th-6th grade)
Category: African-American, Award Books, Multicultural, Non-Fiction
(This book has outstanding illustrations)


As a young boy in Kingston, Jamaica, DJ Kool Herc would watch in awe as the deejays at the house parties would spin the turntables, cranking out music that made the dancing crowd go crazy with excitement! Admiring those talented deejays in Kingston inspired Herc to become a DJ when he moved to the Bronx in New York City. When his father bought him a huge sound system, he began perfecting his talents. His catchy rhymes, shout outs, and turntable skills at parties kept people dancing on the dance floor. Learn how DJ Kool Herc’s superb deejay skills helped to bring the people in his neighborhood together, plus find out how he got his nickname! This biography also includes a Hip Hop timeline.


Book cover Ellen`s Broom
Kelly Starling Lyons (2012) , under 40 pages
Illustrated by Daniel Minter
Audience: Primary (k-3rd grade), Intermediate (4th-6th grade), Adult/Parent
Category: African-American, NCCBA, Realistic Fiction
(This book has outstanding illustrations)


In this charming picture book, Ellen learns about broom weddings during the time when slaves could not be legally married. According to her father, he and Ellen’s mother, ". . . put this here broom on the ground, held hands and leaped into life together." The broom continues to hold an important place in the family for many years, even after her parents become legally married. In the back of the book, the author provides historical information about slave marriages. This tale is accompanied by beautiful artwork created by Daniel Minter in linoleum block prints which brings this story to life.

Reviewed by: Emily / South County Regional Library


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