A Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book
Winner of the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction
When eleven-year-old Langston’s father moves them from their home in Alabama to Chicago’s Bronzeville district, it feels like he’s giving up everything he loves.
It’s 1946. Langston’s mother has just died, and now they’re leaving the rest of his family and friends. He misses everything–Grandma’s Sunday suppers, the red dirt roads, and the magnolia trees his mother loved.
In the city, they live in a small apartment surrounded by noise and chaos. It doesn’t feel like a new start, or a better life. At home he’s lonely, his father always busy at work; at school he’s bullied for being a country boy.
But Langston’s new home has one fantastic thing. Unlike the whites-only library in Alabama, the Chicago Public Library welcomes everyone. There, hiding out after school, Langston discovers another Langston–a poet whom he learns inspired his mother enough to name her only son after him.
Lesa Cline-Ransome, author of the Coretta Scott King Honor picture book Before She Was Harriet, has crafted a lyrical debut novel about one boy’s experiences during the Great Migration. Includes an author’s note about the historical context and her research.
Don’t miss the companion novel, Leaving Lymon, which centers on one of Langston’s classmates and explores grief, resilience, and the circumstances that can drive a boy to become a bully– and offer a chance at redemption.
A Junior Library Guild selection!
A CLA Notable Children’s Book in Language Arts
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year, with 5 Starred Reviews
A School Library Journal Best Book of 2018
A window into a child’s experience of the Great Migration from the award-winning creators of Before She Was Harriet and Finding Langston.
Climbing aboard the New York bound Silver Meteor train, Ruth Ellen embarks upon a journey toward a new life up North– one she can’t begin to imagine. Stop by stop, the perceptive young narrator tells her journey in poems, leaving behind the cotton fields and distant Blue Ridge mountains.
Each leg of the trip brings new revelations as scenes out the window of folks working in fields give way to the Delaware River, the curtain that separates the colored car is removed, and glimpses of the freedom and opportunity the family hopes to find come into view. As they travel, Ruth Ellen reads from Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, reflecting on how her journey mirrors her own– until finally the train arrives at its last stop, New York’s Penn Station, and the family heads out into a night filled with bright lights, glimmering stars, and new possiblity.
James Ransome’s mixed-media illustrations are full of bold color and texture, bringing Ruth Ellen’s journey to life, from sprawling cotton fields to cramped train cars, the wary glances of other passengers and the dark forest through which Frederick Douglass traveled towards freedom. Overground Railroad is, as Lesa notes, a story “of people who were running from and running to at the same time,” and it’s a story that will stay with readers long after the final pages.
An American Library Association Notable Children’s Book
A New York Public Library Best Book of the Year
A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
A Junior Library Guild Selection
Named a Best Picture Book by the African American Children’s Book Project
A Booklist Editor’s Choice
SHE PERSISTED: CLAUDETTE COLVIN
Inspired by the #1 New York Times bestseller She Persisted by Chelsea Clinton and Alexandra Boiger comes a chapter book series about women who stood up, spoke up and rose up against the odds!
Before Rosa Parks famously refused to give up her seat on a bus in Montgomery, Alabama, fifteen-year-old Claudette Colvin made the same choice. She insisted on standing up–or in her case, sitting down–for what was right, and in doing so, fought for equality, fairness, and justice.
In this chapter book biography by award-winning author Lesa Cline-Ransome, readers learn about the amazing life of Claudette Colvin–and how she persisted. Complete with an introduction from Chelsea Clinton!
Praise for She Persisted: Claudette Colvin:
“Cline-Ransome brings the teen activist to life with great compassion and impressive brevity . . . A noteworthy start for chapter-book readers wishing to read more about young leaders of the movement.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Cline-Ransome’s narrative provides a knowledgeable, interesting introduction to an important player in the civil rights movement.” —School Library Journal