Demonstrates that everyone’s voice matters and needs to be heard. Powerful stuff!

SHARICE'S BIG VOICE

A NATIVE KID BECOMES A CONGRESSWOMAN

A big personality with a voice to match, Sharice listens to her heart to find her own path.

In this autobiographical account, U.S. Rep. Sharice Davis shows how she’s always liked to talk and ask questions. She learned early that “good conversation can make people happy” and that “the best way to learn about people is to listen to them.” When Sharice’s mother told her that they were members of the Ho-Chunk nation, who call themselves “People of the Big Voice,” she knew she was on the right path. Sharice wanted to follow in her Army sergeant mother’s footsteps and be “a person who serves others,” so she worked hard at everything she did, excelling at customer service and perfecting martial arts training. Eventually this led her to law school and then to work with Native American tribes. “That’s when,” she tells readers, “I had a bold, brave idea that would need my big voice, my ability to listen, and my ability to take a punch.” Deciding that government needed many different voices, she ran for Congress and won the election, becoming one of the first Native women in Congress and the first lesbian to represent Kansas. Rich, vivid illustrations by Ojibwe Woodland artist Pawis-Steckley are delivered in a graphic style that honors Indigenous people. The bold artwork adds impact to the compelling text. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Demonstrates that everyone’s voice matters and needs to be heard. Powerful stuff! (author’s note, illustrator’s note, cultural note) (Picture book/memoir. 5-10)

Pub Date: June 1, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-06-297966-7

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2021

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There's a need for a good book for kids about Ansel Adams—and this one misses the mark.

ANTSY ANSEL

ANSEL ADAMS, A LIFE IN NATURE

This distillation of the photographer’s life and achievements focuses on his “antsy” youth and early influences.

A distracted, sickly student, Ansel reveled in nature along the beaches near his San Francisco home. He blossomed after his prescient father withdrew him from formal schooling, enabling home tutoring and such experiences as a season ticket to San Francisco’s 1915 world’s fair. Effectively employing onomatopoeia, Jenson-Elliott reveals 14-year-old Ansel’s pivotal experience at Yosemite. On a family trip, “Ansel got his first glimpse of Yosemite Valley—the ripple-rush-ROAR! of water and light! Light! Light! It was love at first sight.” In Yosemite, his parents gave him his first camera, and “he was off— Run-leap-scramble—SNAP!…Ansel’s photos became a / journal of everything he saw.” The final five double-page spreads compress 60-plus years: photography expeditions in Yosemite, marriage to Virginia Best, Adams’ government-commissioned work documenting the national parks, and the enduring importance of his photographic record of the American wild lands. Hale’s collages blend traditional and digital layering and include cropped photographic images such as Adams’ childhood home and wood-paneled station wagon. Her stylized depiction of Yosemite’s Half Dome and decision to render several iconic photographs as painterly thumbnails display a jarring disregard for Adams’ lifelong absorption with technical and visual precision.

There's a need for a good book for kids about Ansel Adams—and this one misses the mark. (biographical note, photographs with note, bibliography of adult resources, websites) (Informational picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-62779-082-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Christy Ottaviano/Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: June 22, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2016

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She said, “Failure is impossible,” and she was right, but unfortunately her steely determination does not come through in...

SUSAN B. ANTHONY

Susan B. Anthony worked to win women the right to vote her whole long life, but she did not live to see it done.

Wallner uses her flat decorative style and rich matte colors to depict Susan B. Anthony’s life, layering on details: Susan catching snowflakes behind her parents’ house; working in her father’s mill (briefly) and then departing school when the money ran out; writing at her desk; speaking passionately in front of small groups and rowdy crowds. It’s a little too wordy and a little less than engaging in describing a life in which Anthony traveled alone, hired her own halls, spoke tirelessly about women’s suffrage, published, created forums where women could speak freely and was arrested for registering to vote. Her life-long friendship with suffragist Elizabeth Cady Stanton is touched on, as are the virulent attacks against her ideas and her person. She died in 1906. Votes for women did not come to pass in the United States until 1920.

She said, “Failure is impossible,” and she was right, but unfortunately her steely determination does not come through in this book. (timeline, bibliography, source notes) (Picture book/biography. 7-10)

Pub Date: March 1, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-8234-1953-1

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Holiday House

Review Posted Online: Jan. 4, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2012

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