Boycott Blues: How Rosa Parks Inspired A Nation


A hound, strumming his guitar, tells the story of Rosa Parks, the Montgomery (Alabama) bus boycott, and the end of Jim Crow. The story is written in poetic form and reads like a blues song.

Reader Enjoyment Factors:

Enjoy this book as poetry or for it's historical significance. The book moves you through Rosa Park's arrest and the 382 days of the Montgomery bus tour with words that weave facts and emotion.

Content Awareness Factors:

I wish there were a CD with this book. For those unfamiliar with the blues, the background music would really bring the book to life and draw out the wearing-down of the year.

Parent Reaction

This is not a rhyming story, but it has a very definite rhythm to its pace. The illustrations, done almost exclusively in black and shades of blue and yellow/orange, force you to slow down. Together, the words and images draw you into a better understanding of Rosa Parks' single act of courage. As you're reading, you can almost hear the music in the background. The publisher characterizes the age range as 5 to 8. This may be difficult for some 5-year-olds to understand.

Type of Book:
This is a picture book story that uses verse to describe the history of the Civil Rights Movement.
Educational Themes:

Although this is a story meant to describe the Montgomery bus boycott and talk about Rosa Parks, it is a treasure-trove of details about the Civil Rights Movement. There are plenty of facts and dates, as well as anecdotal examples of efforts to undermine the effort. It presents both the power and pressures that go with acts of civil disobedience

Reading Level:
Recommended Age To Read By Yourself:
9 to 12
Recommended Age To Read Together:
6 to 10
Purchase Recommendation:
Buy. This is a book that does more than describe who Rosa Parks is and describe the Montgomery bus boycott. It is a testament to personal strength and integrity, the power of a single act, and never giving up. These are timeless ideals, and this is a book

Title Boycott Blues: How Rosa Parks Inspired a Nation
Author Andrea Davis Pinkney
Publisher Greenwillow Books, Imprint HarperCollins Publishers © 2008
Illustrators Brian Pinkney
ISBN 9780060821180
Material Hard Cover
Cost $16.99
Genres Poetry, History - US, History
Other Reviews:

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