My Red, White, and Blue

Philomel. Jan. 2023. 32p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780593525708.
K-Gr 3–A young Black boy explores his own relationship, as well as the relationship of the African American community, to the American flag. The unnamed protagonist narrates in the first person that he views the flag with a sense of pride at home, in the community, and his classroom. His grandfather agrees that there is much to be proud of; however, the flag is also a symbol of the nation’s history of injustice. Many individuals still face challenges that cause them to protest the flag. This protest can take many forms, such as marches or kneeling for the national anthem. Grandpa shares that everyone has the right to protest, but can also be proud, noting the invaluable contributions of Black Americans, such as President Obama and Harriet Tubman. The story’s concluding spreads emphasize the theme that everyone in the country has an important voice and the ability to share it. Throughout the story, Tyson uses rhyming text and accessible language to present the complicated topic in an age-appropriate way. Ladd’s colorful, mixed-media illustrations complement the text and help convey some of the topics discussed throughout. A concluding author’s note discusses patriotism in the Black community.
VERDICT Sure to inspire children and readers of all ages to ask questions and prompt insightful discussion; in an era when the flag has been co-opted by various groups, this book is a reminder that it belongs to everyone and means many things. Highly recommended for purchase.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing