- Age Range: 4 - 8 years
- Grade Level: Preschool - 3
- Lexile Measure: 360 (What's this?)
- Hardcover: 40 pages
- Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens (January 2, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0802723683
- ISBN-13: 978-0802723680
- Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 0.4 x 11.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 7 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,203 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Be a King: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Dream and You Hardcover – January 2, 2018
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"While the book is accessible as an inspiring primer on social justice and taking action, it also challenges more sophisticated readers to make connections between the art, the text, Dr. King’s life, the civil rights movement at large, and the continuing struggle to affect change. . . .This book is sure to spark discussion and empower readers of all ages." - Starred review, School Library Journal
"Thoughtful paintings of moving scenes are paired with brief, motivational reflections that evoke all the sentiment and fervor of the American civil rights movement." - Foreword Review
"The book manages to make essential lessons in civic responsibility accessible to the very young reader." - Booklist
"The historical scenes, painted in Ransome’s signature thick, saturated style, are infused with a powerful sense of narrative." - Publishers Weekly
"The use of rich, realistic paintings with pencil detailing for King’s life contrasts with the brighter, simpler drawings for the contemporary children, giving a physical reminder that his work is ongoing." - School Library Connection
"Bold, honest, informative, and unforgettable." - starred review, Kirkus Reviews on VOICE OF FREEDOM: FRANNIE LOU HAMER
"Told in the first person from Hamer’s own perspective, this lyrical text in verse emphasizes the activist’s perseverance and courage, as she let her booming voice be heard." - starred review, School Library Journal on VOICE OF FREEDOM: FRANNIE LOU HAMER
"Caldecott Honor winner Weatherford has rendered Hamer’s voice so precisely that it is like sitting at her knee as she tells her story." - starred review, Bookist on VOICE OF FREEDOM: FRANNIE LOU HAMER
"Visceral, intimate and plainly told, this story is sure to move young children." - The New York Times Book Review on WORDS SET ME FREE
"Ransome’s acrylic and oil paintings combine striking naturalism with a palette of inky greens and blues." - starred review, Publishers Weekly on WORDS SET ME FREE
About the Author
Carole Boston Weatherford is the author of many children's books, including Caldecott Honor winner Moses; Coretta Scott King Honor winner Becoming Billie Holiday; NAACP Image Award winner Gordon Parks; Carter G. Woodson Award winner The Sound That Jazz Makes; Caldecott Honor and Robert F. Sibert Honor winner Voice of Freedom: Fannie Lou Hamer; I, Matthew Henson; and Jesse Owens: Fastest Man Alive. She is also the recipient of the North Carolina Award for Literature. Carole lives in North Carolina and teaches at Fayetteville State University.
James E. Ransome has illustrated many picture books including the Coretta Scott King Award-winner The Creation, the Coretta Scott King Honor-winner Uncle Jed's Barbershop and This is the Rope by Jacqueline Woodson. James was also one of the collaborators on Our Children Can Soar, which won the NCAAP Image Award. He lives in Rhinebeck, New York, with his wife.
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The illustrations were thoughtfully intertwined: some 2 page spreads offered up every day situations where we all need to work on our "Kingship" and other spreads offered powerful images of Dr. King's work that had readers digging deep into what they knew about Dr. King, the Civil Rights Movement, Rosa Parks and connect it with what they notice about the world today, and what they can do about it.
This is truly a beautiful book with a powerful message: No matter who you are, you can stand up and do what’s right - You can be a King. The opening quote from Martin Luther King Jr. sets the stage by showing that everybody can serve, everybody can make the choice to do what’s right. The illustrations include scenes that relate to Martin Luther King Jr.’slife and the civil rights movement, as well as scenes of children working together to create their “Wall of Justice” that features MLK’s portrait. I loved how this combination of pictures and text would allow for conversation about civil rights while showing how children can honor those who have worked for equal rights and can stand up for equal rights in their own lives. I appreciated the opportunity to read and review this book before its release date, and I have already ordered it for my classroom. I look forward to sharing and discussing it with my sixth graders in January!
#kidlitexchange #BeaKing #martinlutherkingjr #picturebooks
By Carole Boston Weatherford
Illustrated by James E. Ransome
Thank you to @kidlitexchange for making me aware of this book. All opinions are my own.
“Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve… You only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.” - Martin Luther King. So begins this amazing book, Be a King. James Ransome’s illustrations help Carole Boston Weatherford’s words spring to life as she gives examples of how each of us can be a king. No matter if it’s remembering that bigotry hurts, remembering that we need to say “I’m sorry” and mean it, or remembering to stand up to bullies we learn the importance of serving others.
This is a book that needs to be on the shelves of every elementary and public library and one that needs to be shared in every elementary classroom. It’s also one that you will want to share at home. I’m sure it will prompt some great conversations about what your little ones can do to “be a king.”
Be A King is a must read!
This picture book contains just a few lines on every page, but the message is powerful and motivational. Every page starts with the phrase “You Can be a King.”
You Can Be a King
Stamp out hatred.
Put your foot down and walk tall.
Not only is this book a great introduction to the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr., but it touches on the many ways that you, as the reader, can be a king and make the world a better place from admitting that you’ve done wrong to standing up against bullies.
I loved that this book was a jumping off point for further research and discussions. I read this book to my 7-year-old daughter and after reading it, we both desired more information about Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and all he stood for.