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Pathfinders: The Journeys of 16 Extraordinary Black Souls Hardcover – January 3, 2017
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From School Library Journal
Gr 5–8—The lives of 16 fascinating and innovative black men and women are given due recognition in this masterly work. Bolden makes use of a variety of features to convey information in an accessible yet deeply enlightening manner. For instance, sidebars titled "In His/Her Time" provide historical context without burdening the main text with lengthy exposition. With a variety of subjects in different fields, from a magician to a mathematician, a bank founder to a race car driver, there is plenty of fresh report material within these pages. The clean layout and the smart design make for a book that is not only expertly researched but attractive as well. (Each chapter receives its own color palette, visually linking the content within that section together.) VERDICT Teachers and librarians seeking to further develop their history and biography collections will be thrilled with this fine offering.—Erinn Black Salge, Saint Peter's Prep, Jersey City, NJ
"A lively volume and an excellent approach to U.S. history."
"The lives of 16 fascinating and innovative black men and women are given due recognition in this masterly work... Teachers and librarians seeking to further develop their history and biography collections will be thrilled with this fine offering."
"Detailed descriptions and sidebars offer rich portraits of each person’s life and era, and period illustrations and photographs lend further depth to figures who will likely be unfamiliar to many readers."
Top customer reviews
I got it for my daughter as we care starting to read more on unsung heros. This book was very confusing for her elementary mind. Each story began with one character by the second page there's a timeline in the middle of the story and another "relatable " story before the end. Her reading this alone got the characters confused and didn't flow well.
Recommend for higher education like jr high
Among those included are Sadie Alexander, who participated in the Civil Rights movement; Jackie Ormes, a female cartoonist; James Forten, who was taken prisoner during the American Revolution but later became one of Philadelphia's leading opponents of slavery; and Richard Potter, who wowed audiences with his magic, hypnosis and ventriloquist acts.
The author includes helpful and additional information in each sketch. There are timelines of each person's life, historical facts about what was happening in the world during that person's life, as well as brief bios of other prominent figures from that time period. A Glossary, Notes and an Index can be found at the end of the book.
I enjoyed reading this book as, I must confess, I wasn't familiar with most of the people mentioned in the text. I learned a lot about this fascinating group of individuals. The writing is lively and the pages are filled with interesting illustrations and sidebars. A section at the back of the book called Selected Sources provides a list of the sources the author used to write the text. This list can be perused for ideas for further reading about these individuals.
This is a great book for those who are interested in African American history. The text would work particularly well as a resource in the classroom during Black History Month.
Reviewed by Christine M. Irvin