The New York Times recently published an article entitled “Five Iconic African-American Biographies for Kids.” Three out of five of these recommended picture books were written and/or illustrated by artists from Painted Words! The recommended titles included Muhammad Ali: A Champion is Born, The Legendary Miss Lena Horne, and The Youngest Marcher.
Muhammad Ali, written by Gene Barretta and illustrated by Frank Morrison, tells the story of the incident that set a young Ali (then called Cassius Clay) onto his boxing career. Times described it as a, “playful, dynamic look at the champion’s quest for greatness.” They praised Frank for “[giving] the art a joyful zing and a serious yet eminently kid-friendly vibe.” Muhammad Ali can be purchased here.
The Legendary Miss Lena Horne, written by Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrated by Liz Zunon, is the biography of actress, singer, and civil rights activist Lena Horne. The New York Times writes, “The book’s sizzling clarity recalls Horne’s own voice,” and praises Liz’s illustrations, writing, “Zunon…plays with shadow and light to suggest the hidden depths of a very public life.” The Legendary Miss Lena Horne can be purchased here.
The Youngest Marcher, written by Cynthia Levinson and illustrated by Vanessa Brantley Newton, reveals the story of Audrey Faye Hendricks, the youngest known marcher to be arrested in the Birmingham civil rights protests of the ’60s. The Times writes, “Levinson and Newton keep her story bright and snappy, emphasizing the girl’s eagerness to make a difference and her proud place in her community.” The Youngest Marcher can be purchased online here.
You can find the New York Times full list of recommended black history titles here.