Coretta: The Autobiography of Mrs. Coretta Scott King

­Macmillan Young Listeners. Jan. 2024. 15p. $1.99. ISBN 9781250877437.
Gr 1-5–Seven years after the 2017 publication of King’s autobiography for adults, My Life, My Love, My Legacy (also written with Reynolds), and 18 years after her 2006 death, the powers-that-be gift younger readers with an enlightening adaptation. LaVoy is a superb cipher, her gentle gravitas both intimate and respectful. An enhancing soundtrack underscores her performance: jazzy music as Coretta and Martin’s romance develops, moving feet signaling the March on Washington, an ominous phone ringing that will announce Martin’s assassination. For decades after, King continued the nonviolent struggle for human rights, including serving in the United Nations supporting gay rights, fighting apartheid in South Africa; she also pushed Martin’s birthday holiday into federal law in 1983. Important back matter—the “Six Principles of Nonviolence” and a “Civil Rights Timeline”—is also aurally appended.
VERDICT Although a read-along is certainly encouraged (it's illustrated by Caldecott Honor illustrator Ekua Holmes), LaVoy’s impressive narration ensures a memorable standalone audiobook.

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