LEON'S STORY by Leon Walter Tillage

LEON'S STORY

Age Range: 8 - 14
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

 Tillage, a black custodian in a Baltimore private school, reminisces about his childhood as a sharecropper's son in the South, and his youth as a civil-rights protester. He explains the mechanics of sharecropping and segregation, tells of his mistreatment and his father's murder at the hands of white teenagers out to ``have some fun,'' and relates his experiences with police dogs, fire hoses, and jail while following Martin Luther King's ideas of nonviolent protest. Tillage matter-of-factly recounts horrific events, using spare language that is laced with remarkable wisdom, compassion, and optimism. Such gentleness only gives his story more power, as he drives home the harder realities of his childhood. Although the collage illustrations are interesting, they are too moody and remote for the human spirit behind the words, and readers will regret Roth's decision--especially in light of the boy smiling so brightly on the cover--that ``even one photo would be too many for Leon Walter Tillage's words.'' (Memoir. 8-14)

Pub Date: Oct. 29th, 1997
ISBN: 0-374-34379-9
Page count: 107pp
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15th, 1997




KIDS MAKING A DIFFERENCE:

ChildrenBE THE CHANGE by Zach Hunter
by Zach Hunter
ChildrenGLORY BE by Augusta Scattergood
by Augusta Scattergood
ChildrenWE'VE GOT A JOB by Cynthia Y. Levinson
by Cynthia Y. Levinson
ChildrenJUDY MOODY SAVES THE WORLD! by Megan McDonald
by Megan McDonald

MORE BY SUSAN L. ROTH

ChildrenPARROTS OVER PUERTO RICO by Susan L. Roth
by Susan L. Roth
ChildrenDREAM SOMETHING BIG by Dianna Hutts Aston
by Dianna Hutts Aston

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenSEEING RED by Kathryn Erskine
by Kathryn Erskine
ChildrenARCADY'S GOAL by Eugene Yelchin
by Eugene Yelchin