Thursday, January 26, 2017

Freedom over Me by Ashley Bryan - ADVISABLE

Bryan, Ashley Freedom over me : Eleven slaves, their lives and dreams brought to life, PICTURE BOOK. Atheneum Books for young Readers (Simon and Schuster) $17.99. Content: G.

When the widow Mrs. Mary Fairchild decides to sell the estate - which includes 11 slaves - and return home to England, the slaves each tell their stories and their hopes and dreams - Freedom. 

The illustrations are beautifully rendered in pen, ink and watercolor.  The stories are both sad and hopeful - memories of Africa and the fear of separation. Ashley Bryan acquired an estate appraisal from 1828 which included the names and prices of several slaves.  He imagined them and painted, then wrote their stories in free verse.  References to spirituals, african culture and slave life make this a nice introduction to a unit on slavery.  

EL (K-3) ADVISABLE  Lisa Librarian

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