Filling an important void, this picture book delivers stories from a history about which most U.S. children remain woefully ignorant: that of Black Canadian women.
Most American kids know stories of Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, and Sojourner Truth. But who were their equivalents in Canada? This strikingly illustrated collective biography captures some of the incredible life stories of unsung Canadian heroes who broke racial, social, political, and other boundaries to make life better for other Black Canadians. The Colored Women’s Club, for instance, founded in 1902, “focused on supporting Black communities in Montreal” through services like soup kitchens and clothing giveaways. The organization now provides scholarships for black youth, having remained active since its establishment. Readers meet musicians, educators, gay rights activists, and entrepreneurs who paved the way for other Black Canadian visionaries. Moyer’s unusual, eye-catching illustrations feature brightly colored backgrounds with focal characters whose figures appear in black and white. But while their faces are depicted using black-and-white photographs, paintings, or sketches, they all feature stylized dots and striations on them that resemble tribal markings. These distinctive characteristics invite readers to slow down and carefully consider the faces of these powerful women who dared.
A crucial re-education in a likely unfamiliar history and an immersion in noteworthy art all at once. (Collective biography. 10-14)