Logo
help print
 
 
Image of item
Little leaders : bold women in black history
by Harrison, Vashti,
 Book 
Book
J 920 HAR
Little, Brown and Company,, [2017]
87 pages : color illustrations ; 23 cm.
 
Get it
Go Back
 
You can find this item at these locations:
Location Call Number Shelving Location Status
Etna Library J 920 HAR Etna childrens Available
Howe Library J 920 HAR Children's nonfiction Available
About this item:

"Based on her popular Instagram posts, debut author-illustrator Harrison shares the stories of 40 bold African-American women who shaped history and changed the world."--Publisher's description.

Syndetic Solutions - New York Times Review for ISBN Number 9780316475112
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
by Harrison, Vashti
Rate this title:
vote data
Click an element below to view details:

New York Times Review

Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History

New York Times


August 30, 2019

Copyright (c) The New York Times Company

How should adults present the grave injustices throughout black history to young readers? Biographies can help. HISTORY IS A STORY like any other, but black history is a story so devoid of logic that it frustrates the young reader. The young readers in my house, told of slavery and segregation, asked in disbelief: "What? Why?" We - the parents of black children, the parents of all children - still need to tell that story. It comforts the adult conscience to remember that amid history's grave injustices there were still great lives. Hence, I suspect, the preponderance of biographies for children published to coincide with Black History Month. Among that genre's newest arrivals are names familiar to adults, as in THE UNITED STATES V. JACKIE ROBINSON (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray, $17.99, ages 4 to 8), written by Sudipta BardhanQuallen. This picture book is more interested in young Robinson's less-known act of resistance during his Army days than in his later, trailblazing career as a baseball player. It's nice to have an athlete celebrated for personal integrity over physical prowess, and R. Gregory Christie's pictures bolster this, evoking a Robinson who is strong and sure, but also smiling, warm, and ultimately, triumphant. Ella Fitzgerald is more than a familiar name; understanding this, Helen Hancocks has called her new picture book ELLA QUEEN OF JAZZ (Frances Lincoln Children's Books/Quarto, $17.99; ages 4 to 8). Hancocks's illustrations are superb - bright and suitably retro in style. But her tale takes a turn that is not the one Fitzgerald deserves. The focus is mostly on how Fitzgerald's friendship with Marilyn Monroe helped her career, and the movie star, alas, upstages the singer. BEFORE SHE WAS HARRIET (Holiday House, $17.95; ages 4 to 8) is a straightforward picture-book biography of the exceptional Harriet Ttibman. In minimalist verse, Lesa Cline-Ransome begins with the woman in her dotage, then walks readers back through her years as suffragist, spy and liberator - but also, importantly, as a woman who simply wanted to be free. James E. Ransome's lovely watercolor illustrations capture Ttibman's daring, her joy and her dignity. Sandra Neil Wallace's BETWEEN THE LINES: How Ernie Barnes Went From the Football Field to the Art Gallery (Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman, $17.99; ages 4 to 8), illustrated by Bryan Collier, is a beautiful testament to a quintessentially American life. Wallace and Collier celebrate both Barnes's success on the gridiron and his subsequent reinvention as an artist. As in "The United States v. Jackie Robinson," athleticism is a secondary concern; early on, we see the young Barnes in a museum, wondering where the black painters are, and the story ends with contemporary young museumgoers being shown Barnes's art. This choice makes the story so satisfying, and just what you want at bedtime. In LET THE CHILDREN MARCH (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers, $17.99; ages 6 to 9) Monica Clark-Robinson tells one girl's story of the 1963 children's march on Birmingham. Frank Morrison's illustrations are loose and modern in spirit, enlivening the history lesson. It's understandable to want to channel Martin Luther King Jr.'s oratorical gifts when writing about him, but sometimes the metaphors strain. Still, the book's message is clear and bracing: King understood that it's children who will lead the way, and the man's faith in the future is reassuring even now. Two biographical compendiums, Vashti Harrison's LITTLE LEADERS: Bold Women in Black History (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, $16.99; ages 8 to 12) and Jamia Wilson and Andrea Pippins's YOUNG, GIFTED AND BLACK (Wide Eyed Editions/Quarto, $22.99; ages 7 to 10) are, by contrast, not bedtime reading but texts that belong in any home library, to be revisited again and again. Wilson's book celebrates a variety of black achievement; there are biographical sketches of Kofi Annan and Stevie Wonder, Solange Knowles and Naomi Campbell, accompanied by Andrea Pippins's illustrations, full of verve but also quite dignified. The candy-colored pages and straightforward stories are hard to resist, and will doubtless forever shape the way many readers think about Wangari Maathai and Langston Hughes. Harrison's book focuses on great black women, and it's lovely to see Lorna Simpson and Gwen Ifill ascend to the ranks of Marian Anderson and Bessie Coleman. Harrison wants readers to imagine themselves in such august company; her adorable illustrations depict all of these figures as a little black girl, an everygirl, in a variety of costumes and backdrops. Harrison and Wilson have similar projects. But which book is better? I'd like to point out that my sons own around 40 volumes on the subject of trucks. Young readers deserve both these books. FOR OLDER READERS The person most qualified to tell the tale of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the man himself, as gifted an intellect as he is an athlete. Written with Raymond Obstfeld, his autobiography, BECOMING KAREEM: Growing Up On and Off the Court (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, $17.99; ages 10 and up) is aimed at middle grade readers but could and should be read aloud to younger kids. It's a tale by a wise elder - about basketball, sure, but also about cultural, political, social and religious awakenings, big stuff narrated in a very accessible way. MARTIN RISING: Requiem for a King (Scholastic, $19.99; ages 9 to 12) is a collaboration by two of children's literature's most well-known names, Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney (who happen to be married). It's a work of verse, with some prose end matter to help elucidate the poems, and it will reward a reader sophisticated enough to grapple with language and metaphor. Andrea Davis Pinkney frames her poem cycle about the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s last months with the figure of Henny Penny, the bird who either worried or prophesied, and she makes King's death feel as significant as the falling of the sky above. It is, of course, a terrible and sad story, but one in which Brian Pinkney's illustrations manage to find beauty. King is an evergreen subject, so significant and complex that the story of his life and death can withstand repeated tellings. James L. Swanson's CHASING KING'S KILLER: The Hunt for Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Assassin (Scholastic, $19.99; ages 12 and up) is a departure, less classroom text than airport thriller. It's a bit like sneaking kale into brownies: Swanson offers plenty of context on King's activism and his turbulent times, but frames the book as a manhunt for James Earl Ray. This approach makes education feel more like entertainment, and will prove seductive to even a reluctant older reader. My children are too young, yet, for Swanson's thriller and the Pinkneys' elegiac tribute, or maybe I simply want to believe that they are. They have a lifetime of reading ahead, particularly if they are to meet Dr. King's expectations for them. For now, my boys can suspend disbelief and accept that Pippi Longstocking can lift a horse and plays with pistols. But they won't be able to believe what happened to Dr. King in Memphis. Who among us can? RUMAAN alam is the author of two novels, "Rich and Pretty" and "That Kind of Mother," which will be published next month.

Syndetic Solutions - The Horn Book Review for ISBN Number 9780316475112
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
by Harrison, Vashti
Rate this title:
vote data
Click an element below to view details:

The Horn Book Review

Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History

The Horn Book


(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

What aesthetically appears to be a collective picture-book biography for young children is probably better suited to slightly older kids; the one-page vignettes of famous black women are in small, densely packed print. Each woman is interchangeably illustrated with down-glancing posture and distinguishable only by hair and clothing--per Harrison's introduction, for the reader "to see yourself in any one of them." Reading list, websites. (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Syndetic Solutions - BookList Review for ISBN Number 9780316475112
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
by Harrison, Vashti
Rate this title:
vote data
Click an element below to view details:

BookList Review

Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History

Booklist


From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.

Harrison introduces 40 outstanding black women in one-page biographies. They range from the well-known (Ida B. Wells, Ella Fitzgerald, Shirley Chisholm) to women whose names are lesser known but just as important: Rebecca Lee Crumpler, a nineteenth-century physician; Marcelite Harris, an airline pilot; and Julie Dash, a filmmaker. But it's not the short bios that attract the most attention; it's the delightful full-page artwork that faces the text. Each subject is drawn identically, almost like a paper doll, but with her own hair, dress, and accouterments. Most are posed the same, centered in the middle of the page, full-faced, eyes closed. Despite the similarities, each woman is fully unique. Children will be inspired by these women, all of whom, in some way, had to overcome adversity or roadblocks to achieve their goals. Just one question: why are all the eyes closed? These trailblazers led their lives with their eyes wide open.--Cooper, Ilene Copyright 2018 Booklist

Syndetic Solutions - Kirkus Review for ISBN Number 9780316475112
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
by Harrison, Vashti
Rate this title:
vote data
Click an element below to view details:

Kirkus Review

Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History

Kirkus Reviews


Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Visual artist Harrison introduces 40 trailblazing black women from United States history in this inspiring volume for young readers.The book just begs to be picked up, with its handy trim size and its attractively simple cover design featuring smiling brown girls in various historical outfits. Each leader is described in a one-page minibiography that faces a full-page illustration of the woman in clothes and a simplified setting that represent her role and her era. Each concise biography includes the leader's background as a child or youth, touches on her major accomplishments, and ends with her legacy. Some of the women featured are household names, such as Harriet Tubman and Oprah Winfrey. Others are less well-known, including Mamie Phipps Clark and Alice Ball. Whether wearing flying gear or a long ruffled dress, each "little leader" appears utterly approachable. Their surroundings in the pictures capture the diverse accomplishments and personalities of these bold black women, while their small figures and sweet, round faces invite child readers to imagine themselves in such roles. The effect is purely magical.Perfect for exploring together at bedtime or for children to browse independently, a gorgeous invitation for children of all backgrounds, and especially for black girls, to learn about black women who were pioneers. (Collective biography. 6-12) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Syndetic Solutions - School Library Journal Review for ISBN Number 9780316475112
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History
by Harrison, Vashti
Rate this title:
vote data
Click an element below to view details:

School Library Journal Review

Little Leaders : Bold Women in Black History

School Library Journal


(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

K-Gr 4-An artist's social media sensation is lovingly brought to life in this standout title. Initially a personal project for Black History Month, Harrison's collection highlights 40 notable black women throughout U.S. history. Each entry includes two to three paragraphs of biographical text, opposite which nearly identical figures (most are drawn facing forward with cherubic smiles and closed eyes) hold center stage of their full-page portrait, framed by simple yet clever backgrounds that contextualize their achievements. Audre Lorde, for example, stands before muted brown bookshelves-keen eyes will discern that the books displayed feature her poetry and prose. Leadership is embraced in forms past and present and across various disciplines; renowned abolitionists Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth are joined by Air Force General Marcelite J. Harris and filmmaker Julie Dash. A concluding "More Little Leaders" segment addresses the difficulty of selecting 40 women to represent a historical legacy and offers miniature renditions of additional icons, including Gabby Douglas, Lorraine Hansberry, and the Williams sisters. Useful back matter provides multimedia sources for inevitably curious readers. The amount of information included makes this book ideal for budding researchers or for small groups, although the heartwarming digital images will garner a younger audience, too-kids of all ages will love poring over Harrison's tender artwork. VERDICT Beautifully designed and chock-full of information, this is a fantastic survey of black women who made and continue to make history. A must-have for youth nonfiction collections.-Ashleigh -Williams, School Library Journal © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

 
New Search