The ABCs of Black History - book cover
Growing Up & Facts of Life
  • Publisher : Workman Publishing Company; Illustrated edition
  • Published : 08 Dec 2020
  • Pages : 64
  • ISBN-10 : 1523507497
  • ISBN-13 : 9781523507498
  • Language : English

The ABCs of Black History


B is for Beautiful, Brave, and Bright! And for a Book that takes a Bold journey through the alphabet of Black history and culture.

Letter by letter, The ABCs of Black History celebrates a story that spans continents and centuries, triumph and heartbreak, creativity and joy.
It's a story of big ideas––P is for Power, S is for Science and Soul. Of significant moments––G is for Great Migration. Of iconic figures––H is for Zora Neale Hurston, X is for Malcom X. It's an ABC book like no other, and a story of hope and love.

In addition to rhyming text, the book includes back matter with information on the events, places, and people mentioned in the poem, from Mae Jemison to W. E. B. Du Bois, Fannie Lou Hamer to Sam Cooke, and the Little Rock Nine to DJ Kool Herc.


Editorial Reviews

"In rhyming couplets, Cortez leads readers on a journey through Black life that acknowledges pain and struggle while building confidence with examples of triumph. It's a tricky maneuver when writing for children, but Cortez pulls it off." - The New York Times

"A uniquely crafted ABC book that portrays some of the most important events in Black History with a vibrancy and joy that young children will absolutely love." - Parade

"...The layers of history are plentiful and complex....A useful mentor text for writing projects, a springboard for research, and an essential addition to classroom libraries." - Booklist

"An impressive array of names, events, and concepts from Black history are introduced in this alphabet book for early-elementary readers... The rhyming verses are light on the tongue, making the reading smooth and soothing. The brightly colored, folk art–style illustrations offer vibrant scenes of historical and contemporary Black life..." - Kirkus Starred Review

"Poet Cortez pens an informative ode to Black history in her children's book debut-for each letter of this abecedarian, she offers lightly alliterative, rhyming text that illuminates historically significant concepts and figures…A particularly resonant spread shows a crowd holding signs that reflect both historical and current events, including "We March with Selma" and "We Can't Breathe," demonstrating to young readers how past occurrences affect the present… A richly accessible resource for anyone seeking to celebrate Black visionaries." - Publishers Weekly

Readers Top Reviews

MichelleShontae h
I adore this book. It's full of historical facts, notable people, and cultural touchstones. It's honest about struggle while still representing the persistent hope of the Black community throughout history. It gave my daughter and I a lot to talk about, as I'm sure it will each time we read it! I also appreciate that at the end of the book, it includes a reference guide explaining each person/event mentioned on each page. Very well done!
Christina FMichel
The ABCs of Black History is a gorgeous book. The lyrical writing is paired with vibrant art to tell the story of important figures and concepts throughout Black history. There’s a detailed section at the back where you can take a deep dive into each person or concept. My 4-year-old loves the book, and she even wants to go through all of the “terms and figures” at the end, too. This has led us into even more research to learn about the people who interest her (for example, the cowboy Nat Love). Highly recommend this beautiful book for all ages!
MLChristina FMich
This book is a must! It’s great for ages 2-99. I’ve learned so much from this book and I’m 64. Bought for my granddaughter but have found it to be a book for all ages. The back of the book goes into further detail of each event or individuals. It’s fun to take a couple of letters each day and research them. This book should be required reading in schools. Buy it, you’ll love it. The illustrations are stunning!
LUFMLChristina FM
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! The pictures were vivid, the prose understandable and comprehensive and some of the pictures are historical but not part of the text which wets your appetite to research the pictures. I've gifted my grand nephews and plan on purchasing a book for each of my siblings' grands'. It's a great book for anybody's library!
Maureen DaviesLUF
As adults, we are reading a letter a day in this book, using the incredibly informative index at the back, and looking online for further information on all the references made in the poetic writing and beautiful illustrations. We are learning so much, every page can be read at the surface or taken very deeply, expanding on the black experience in America - things we should have learned about through schooling but did not. Information about inventions, cultural innovations, art, and amazing people who have created the America we know now.

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