Picture books brings Black History to life
2006 Caldecott Honor Book
Nearly every child has heard of Rosa Parks, the recently deceased heroine of the Montgomery bus boycott. To honor her, poet Nikki Giovanni and artist Bryan Collier have teamed up to create a stunning new volume, Rosa. Moving beyond the familiar mythology of a woman too tired to move out of her seat, Giovanni and Collier tell the whole story of a strong woman with a mind of her own who knew the power of working with others. She sighed as she realized she was tired. Not tired from work but tired of putting white people first. Tired of stepping off sidewalks to let white people pass, tired of eating at separate lunch counters and learning at separate schools. . . . Tired of Ã”separate,' and definitely tired of Ã”not equal.' The cover shows the bus driver angrily willing this strong black woman to move and Parks' quiet defiance. The yellow wash of the illustrations reflects the hot Alabama sun as the book marches toward its stunning climax: a fold-out mural showing the proud, tired, resolved people of Montgomery preparing for the hard work to come.