BIRMINGHAM, 1963 by Carole Boston Weatherford
Kirkus Star

BIRMINGHAM, 1963

Age Range: 10 - 14

KIRKUS REVIEW

Exquisitely understated design lends visual potency to a searing poetic evocation of the Birmingham church bombing of 1963. The unnamed fictional narrator relates the events of “[t]he year I turned ten,” this refrain introducing such domestic commonplaces as her first sip of coffee and “doz[ing] on Mama’s shoulder” at church. She juxtaposes these against the momentous events of the year: the Children’s March in Birmingham for which the narrator missed school, the March on Washington and the mass meetings at church that she found so soporific. The same matter-of-fact tone continues to relate what happened “[t]he day I turned ten:” “10:22 a.m. The clock stopped, and Jesus’ face / Was blown out of the only stained-glass window / Left standing. . . . ” Documentary gray dominates the palette, the only color angry streaks of red that evoke shattered window frames. The poems appear on recto accompanied by images of childhood—patent-leather shoes, pencils, bobby socks—while full-bleed archival photographs face them on verso. It’s a gorgeous memorial to the four killed on that horrible day, and to the thousands of children who braved violence to help change the world. (Poetry. 10-14)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-1-59078-440-2
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Wordsong/Boyds Mills
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2007




CHILDREN AND THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT:

Children WALKING TO THE BUS-RIDER BLUES by Harriette Gillem Robinet
by Harriette Gillem Robinet
Children MARCHING FOR FREEDOM by Elizabeth Partridge
by Elizabeth Partridge
Children WE'VE GOT A JOB by Cynthia Y. Levinson
by Cynthia Y. Levinson
Children CHILD OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT by Paula Young Shelton
by Paula Young Shelton

MORE BY CAROLE BOSTON WEATHERFORD

ChildrenSUGAR HILL by Carole Boston Weatherford
by Carole Boston Weatherford
ChildrenMICHELLE OBAMA by Carole Boston Weatherford
by Carole Boston Weatherford
ChildrenOBAMA by Carole Boston Weatherford
by Carole Boston Weatherford

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

IndieOUR SOUTHERN HOME by Waights  Taylor Jr.
by Waights Taylor Jr.
NonfictionLAST CHANCE FOR JUSTICE by T.K. Thorne
by T.K. Thorne