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Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah's inspiring true story--which was turned into a film, Emmanuel's Gift, narrated by Oprah Winfrey--is nothing short of remarkable. Born in Ghana, West Africa, with one deformed leg, he was dismissed by most people--but not by his mother, who taught him to reach for his dreams. As a boy, Emmanuel hopped to school more than two miles each way, learned to play soccer, left home at age thirteen to provide for his family, and, eventually, became a cyclist. He rode an astonishing four hundred miles across Ghana in 2001, spreading his powerful message: disability is not inability. Today, Emmanuel continues to work on behalf of the disabled. Thompson's lyrical prose and Qualls's bold collage illustrations offer a powerful celebration of triumphing over adversity.Includes an author's note with more information about Emmanuel's charity.<P><P> Winner of the Scheider Family Award
In 1773, Phillis Wheatley published a book of poetry. It was a great accomplishment that made her very famous.Only a year before, Phillis had had to take a test to prove that she was the actual author of these poems, because Phillis Wheatley was a slave.Who would believe that an African girl could be the author of such poetry?Phillis did! She believed in herself, and took every opportunity she could to make her life better. She believed in the power of her words, and her writing to prove her talent, and used the power of words to change a life.
A lyrical biography of a Cuban slave who escaped to become a celebrated poet. Born into the household of a wealthy slave owner in Cuba in 1797, Juan Francisco Manzano spent his early years by the side of a woman who made him call her Mama, even though he had a mama of his own. Denied an education, young Juan still showed an exceptional talent for poetry. His verses reflect the beauty of his world, but they also expose its hideous cruelty. Powerful, haunting poems and breathtaking illustrations create a portrait of a life in which even the pain of slavery could not extinguish the capacity for hope. <P><P> The Poet Slave of Cuba is the winner of the 2008 Pura Belpre Medal for Narrative and a 2007 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.
A lyrical story about how looking back is helpful when you start looking forward. . . .A young girl thoughtfully considers her family tree and the vibrant ancestors who populate it. As each family member's story is revealed, her quiet meditation--about what kind of person she'll be when she grows up--transforms into a testament to the importance of sharing family stories. The simple, elegant narrative combined with Sean Qualls's evocative art makes for a wonderful read-aloud experience.