In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, Executive Director Deborah Pope recommends these picture books, which tell the stories of Dr. King and others who fought for civil rights in the 1960s.
Deborah Pope talks about her selections with Shelley Goldberg on NY1.
As Fast As Words Could Fly, by Pamela M. Tuck, illustrated by Eric Velasquez Lee & Low Books, 2013
Based on a true story, this book features a 14-year-old boy who supports the civil rights movement by typing his father’s letters of protest against racial injustice. His skill places him in a pivotal role in desegregating a North Carolina high school.
Delivering Justice: W.W. Law and the Fight for Civil Rights, by Jim Haskins, illustrated by Benny Andrews
Candlewick Press, 2005
The story of the NAACP’s W.W. Law, the postman who led the nonviolent protests that desegregated Savannah, Georgia, in 1961.
March On!: The Day My Brother Martin Changed the World, by Christine King Farris, illustrated by London Ladd
The older sister of Martin Luther King, Jr., offers a unique perspective on the 1963 March on Washington as she remembers her brother as a boy and as a leader.
Martin & Mahalia: His Words, Her Song, by Andrea Davis Pinkney, illustrated by Brian Pinkney
Little, Brown, 2013
The legacies of Dr. King and the Queen of Gospel Mahalia Jackson are intertwined, as theirs were the epic voices of the 1963 March on Washington. The story of their lives and friendship also shows how the arts inspire and narrate social change.
The School Is Not White!: A True Story of the Civil Rights Movement, by Doreen Rappaport, illustrated by Curtis James
StarWalk Kids Media, 2014
How the Carter family desegregated a Mississippi high school in 1965: with faith, determination and the courage to show up every single day.
White Socks Only, by Evelyn Coleman, illustrated by Tyrone Geter
Albert Whitman & Company, 1996
A heartwarming story of a young girl who innocently defies the “whites-only” rule, and with the help of her neighbors, succeeds in breaking it for good.