Monday, April 23, 2012

Ellen’s Broom by Kelly Starling Lyons

Lyons, Kelly Starling  Ellen’s Broom Illustrated by Daniel Minter  G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2012.  $16.99  PICTURE BOOK Content: G  

Ellen celebrates the fact that her family no longer has to sit at the back of the church because the slave days are over.  As part of registering the families the local government has each previously considered slave couple register as married couples with their children.  This spurs a story from Ellen’s mother about the broom marriage that they first had when they were slaves.  Because slaves couldn’t marry legally, they use to have a broom ceremony where they would jump over the broom together and start their life, but because that marriage wasn’t recognized by the law they could be separated by their owners.  At the end of the story, Ellen decides that she wants to have a broom ceremony when she grows up and her parents decide that is okay because it’s part of their heritage.  

The illustrations are great and the story is an interesting  way to explain the fact that slave couples couldn’t  be married and could be separated at any time.

EL (K-3) (4-6)-ADVISABLE.  Reviewer, C. Peterson.

No comments: