Isabel has been wearing an old hat of mine lately and offering to be my personal detective. She wrote her name on a piece of scratch paper in red crayon. It says, "Isabel- Detective" and every time I turn the corner, she asks me if I have a case for her to solve.
When the box came from Chronicle Books for Multicultural Children's Book Day, I asked her to open it. She promptly took the book, Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker, out of the packaging and set out to read it, instead of eating her gluten free ramen.
The book set her on an investigation of her own. Asking questions like, "What is Segregation?" This book set us on an afternoon of talking about what life was like for Josephine and how it was different from Isabel's life. Josephine didn't have proper clothes to keep her warm, so she danced instead. She didn't have her own bed, she slept in one bed with her whole family. This conversation was priceless.
We love the illustrations by Christian Robinson, each page is a joy. The whole book is written in a dance of it's own -- it holds a cadence from beginning to end. Patricia Hruby Powell's retelling of Josephine's life captures a beautiful story of hardship to triumph, struggle, desire and hard work. Josephine reminds you do do what you love with your whole soul.
Thank you to Chronicle Books for sending us this lovely book, we will be donating it to our library so if you are local, you'll be able to read it too!
Do you want to see more Multicultural Children's Book Day reviews? Visit these lovely folks: