Let It Shine: Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters

Andrea Davis Pinkney, Author, Stephen Alcorn, Author, Stephen Alcorn, Illustrator Harcourt Children's Books $20 (120p) ISBN 978-0-15-201005-8
Pinkney (Silent Thunder) presents eloquent portraits of 10 intrepid African-American activists for the causes of abolition, women's rights and civil rights. Exploring these individuals' childhoods as well as their accomplishments as adults, the author smoothly distills biographical information so as to hold the attention of young readers. Her selection of subjects includes the prominent (Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks and Shirley Chisholm) as well as such lesser-knowns as Fannie Lou Hamer, an indefatigable campaigner for African-Americans' right to vote. Pinkney's writing is spiced with colloquialisms (""She didn't shy back for nobody,"" she says of Sojourner Truth) and useful imagery (describing this same crusader's delivery of her renowned ""Ain't I a woman?"" speech, the author notes, ""She was the only black woman in the place, and when she stepped to the pulpit, some folks looked at her like she was a stain on their purest linens""). Featuring creatively skewed perspective and proportion, Alcorn's (I, Too, Sing America) oil paintings offer allegorical interpretations of his subjects' lives. Ages 8-up. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 09/04/2000
Release date: 09/01/2000
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