Always a Fave: Harriet Tubman, Kadir Nelson, and Carole Boston Weatherford
If you’ve been around here a minute you’ll know that I LOVE me some Kadir Nelson. Here’s a book I’ve featured many times because of the illustrations. If you are looking to add a beautifully illustrated picture book to your collection, put this book at the top of your list. Kadir Nelson’s dark and gothic-like illustrations are the perfect complement to Carole Boston Weatherford’s poetic narrative. As much as I loved the illustrations, however, the verse kind of put me off. The story involves a conversation between Harriet Tubman and God as she travels The Underground Railroad. This fictionalized account is a clever take on Harriet’s journey; however, if you are not a particularly spiritual person, you might not enjoy the text as much as others may.
Given the spiritual overtones, I am curious if this book is chosen to be used in schools. The text is almost like one continuous prayer. I would think churches may be more interested in it. While it is no wonder this title is a Caldecott Honor Book, I was especially interested in illustrations; they are like artwork.
The multicultural perspective of this book is obvious. Readers of other cultures can learn about slavery and The Underground Railroad. Especially appealing is that the main character is not only African American, but a woman.