An American story of an extraordinary woman.
Writing in free verse and borrowing the voice of the great abolitionist, Turner presents a powerful account of Truth’s life. Born into slavery as Isabella and sold from family to family, she took the name Sojourner Truth and began preaching for freedom. Later in life, she dictated her story, published as The Narrative of Sojourner Truth. Ransome paints in evocative watercolors that are barely contained in full-bleed pages that capture both the drama and the sorrow of her life. Particularly effective is a double-page spread with three views of Sojourner Truth behind a pulpit forcefully “tell[ing] the news of God’s truth in meetings and gatherings.” Against a white background, the images explode across the pages. Selected words in larger type and italics are a strong component of the page design. As a read-aloud, the text is strong and effective. As a part of a curriculum, there are concerns. The first-person narrative can be mistakenly taken as an autobiography, which it is not, and quotations are not sourced.
When used in concert with other sources, a powerful life of a determined woman who rose from slavery to preach for freedom. (author’s note, photograph, further reading) (Picture book/biography. 6-8)