Indelible Ann: The Larger-Than-Life Story of Governor Ann Richards

Random House Studio. Jun. 2021. 44p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780593173275.
Gr 4-6–This biography of Ann Richards uses the tone and structure of a tall-tale to pack a lifetime of the legendary Texas activist and politician’s accomplishments and exploits into a picture book length text. Whitt’s beautifully rendered drawings convey an energy and sense of motion that echoes Richards’s dynamic, no-nonsense personality. Browne’s narrative, while struggling to balance the complexity of language needed to convey the ups and downs of a historic political life, does tend to gloss over specific dates and details. Also, as somewhat expected in the telling of a folk heroine’s daring deeds, there’s quite a bit of hyperbolic praise and very little discussion of the low points or missteps of this larger-than-life lady. An afterword offers a more traditional brief biography and an explication of Richards’s impact as a woman of amazing achievements who did a great deal of good for a great many people over the course of her extraordinary life and inspired others to do the same.
VERDICT This exciting, sunny biography is as real and rollicking as the late governor herself, and is highly recommended for elementary and junior high nonfiction collections.

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