★ "An alarmingly relevant book that mirrors current events." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Demonstrating the power of protest and standing up for a just cause, here is an exciting tribute to the educators who participated in the 1965 Selma Teachers' March.
Reverend F.D. Reese was a leader of the Voting Rights Movement in Selma, Alabama. As a teacher and principal, he recognized that his colleagues were viewed with great respect in the city. Could he convince them to risk their jobs--and perhaps their lives--by organizing a teachers-only march to the county courthouse to demand their right to vote? On January 22, 1965, the Black teachers left their classrooms and did just that, with Reverend Reese leading the way. Noted nonfiction authors Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace conducted the last interviews with Reverend Reese before his death in 2018 and interviewed several teachers and their family members in order to tell this story, which is especially important today.
Donating a portion of their proceeds to institutions in Selma, Ala., the married coauthors present a vivid nonfiction narrative that illuminates the January 1965 Teachers' March to Selma's Dallas County Courthouse. By highlighting and interweaving the journeys of a few specific people--Rev. F.D. Reese, who led marchers to register to vote; Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who visited Selma to speak on voting rights; and Too Sweet, a teacher and single mother who joined the march--the Wallaces eloquently portray the vitality of the group effort as well as the high risk involved in participating in the initial and subsequent Selma marches. Abstract, multilayered acrylic paintings by Palmer ground readers in the action, such as a moving scene in which lines of teachers march. This well-researched picture book proves riveting in its telling of how everyday heroes led a fight that resulted in the Voting Rights Act. Back matter includes creators' notes, a timeline, a selected bibliography, and further resources. Ages 7-10. (Sept.)Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.