From School Library Journal
Grade 1-4-This eloquent picture book presents a brief overview of King's life and accomplishments. The text focuses on events beginning with the 1955 arrest of Rosa Parks and King's leadership during the yearlong boycott that eventually resulted in the integration of buses in Montgomery, AL. The book ends with his support of the striking sanitation workers in Memphis in 1968 and his assassination a few days later. In a clear and cogent manner, Myers frames King's political efforts and his belief in nonviolent demonstration for change with information about the personal consequences to the man and his family. The author also paraphrases some of his subject's most powerful speeches without quoting them directly. Jenkins's stunning collage artwork dramatically reflects the events described in the narrative. Information about how protestors were frequently assaulted is paired with an abstract street scene, the frighteningly toothy profile of a chalk-white guard dog front and center. In a spread depicting King's famous speech about seeing the promised land, he is shown with his arms gracefully yet compellingly uplifted; the power and beauty of his words are reflected in the brightly colored background, while fiery red tones foreshadow his murder. This book makes an excellent starting point to introduce young readers to King and should be coupled with Doreen Rappaport's Martin's Big Words
(Hyperion, 2001), which so effectively provides access to the words that made him famous.-Susan M. Moore, Louisville Free Public Library, KY
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PreS-Gr. 3. Dr. Martin Luther King is perhaps the mostfrequently requested biography subject, so there's always room foranother book about the heroic leader, especially when it's apicture-book biography as good as this one. The focus here is on hispublic image, and words and art combine the essentials of his lifestory with an overview of the civil rights movement. Jenkins'dramatic, double-page collage illustrations set close-up portraits ofthe leader against crowd scenes of political marches and violentconflict. Then, after the glory of the March on Washington, there's adouble-page spread showing the horror of the Birmingham deaths. Thebook ends with King's assassination, but words and pictures show hisstrength and his enduring message against racism and for peace. Thisis for a younger audience than Myers and Jenkins' Malcolm X: AFire Burning Brightly
(2000). There's also much less here about thesubject's personal struggle, but when read together, the two titleswill stimulate debate about issues of protest andnonviolence. Hazel RochmanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved