Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Book Review - Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip Hoose

Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward JusticeClaudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip M. Hoose

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

On December 1, 1955 Rosa Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her seat on a city bus in Montgomery, Alabama to a white person. This sparked the great Montgomery Bus Boycott – the day when the African-American community in Montgomery decided they would rather walk then be told where to sit on the bus or to give up their seat so a white person could sit down. But what about those who came before Rosa Parks? Was she the first to refuse to get up? On March 2, 1955 Claudette Colvin, a young African-American girl of 15 refused to vacate her seat to a white woman. But her story is far different from Rosa Parks. While she is not celebrated like Rosa Parks, Claudette was instrumental in changing our world – while only a teenager. The story of Claudette Colvin is brought to light in her own words in Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice.

While I liked this book, it seemed to take me forever to read. Although it was set up chronologically it does jump around to try and give the whole story of what was happening at the time. I would have appreciated hearing the whole story in Claudette's own voice throughout the book rather than in spurts. I think children 10+ will do okay with the ideas brought forth in the book but younger readers will have a hard time. It definitely inspires further research into the subject. For 5th graders up, it is a wonderful read, if not to learn about segregation but to be inspired to change their world themselves.

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