A Library

Versify/HarperCollins/. Sept. 2022. 40p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780358387657.
PreS-Gr 2–What is a library? “A place to be free.” A Black girl with her afro pulled into puffs, an old-fashioned collared dress, white socks, and black Mary Janes helps her grandmother with household chores before running off to the library to read, to dream, and to be fully herself. Later she returns home with an armful of books and helps with chores again before covering up with a quilt and a book to “read…to be another me.” Poetic text and evocative, textured illustrations work in concert to show how books and libraries enable people to imagine other lives—including other versions of their own selves. In an author’s note, “My Library,” Giovanni describes her early library experience in Knoxville, TN, and her first librarian, who helped her get books outside of the “colored” library.
VERDICT A must-have for school and public libraries; a joyful promotion of reading and where it takes the imagination, and the resources that support it.

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