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The Faith of Elijah Cummings: The North Star of Equal Justice by Carole Boston Weatherford, Illustrated by Laura Freeman
Author: Carole Boston Weatherford
Illustrator: Laura Freeman
Publication Date: January 11, 2022 by Random House

Summary: Congressman and civil rights advocate Elijah Cummings dedicated his life to public service. This comprehensive and visually stunning biography details his humble beginnings and unwavering faith as he waged an endless battle for truth, justice, and equality.

We can do better.

When Elijah Cummings was a little boy, he struggled in school. His teachers thought he talked too much and asked too many questions. They said he’d never be able to read or write well.

Despite his difficulties, Elijah never gave up. He persevered, having faith that with hard work, he’d be able to achieve his goals.

Best known as a voice for people of color and an advocate for equal opportunity, Elijah Cummings was a man of faith and dignity, a beacon of justice, and an unrelenting warrior for equality and change.

Carole Boston Weatherford and Laura Freeman marry words and images beautifully in this picture book biography of politician and civil rights champion Elijah Cummings, detailing his inspiring journey–from his humble beginnings as the son of former sharecroppers to his unwavering faith as he became a lawyer, state legislator, and leading congressman. Best known as a voice for people of color and an advocate for equal opportunity, Elijah Cummings was a man of faith and dignity, a beacon of justice, and an unrelenting warrior for equality and change.Discussion

Ricki’s Review: This book had phenomenal pacing. I felt like I really came to understand Elijah Cummings’ life story, and I learned a lot. It includes information about his childhood through his adulthood, which I really appreciated. All three of my children loved reading it, and even my two-year-old sat for the entire book and asked questions.

In classrooms, some stories are highlighted and emphasized every year, and I was glad to read a book highlighting Elijah Cummings’ story and his impact on the Civil Rights movement. He was a phenomenal human being who contributed greatly to the world, and this story beautifully depicts his story.

Kellee’s Review: You can always trust Carole Boston Weatherford to write a beautiful, researched, and well done piece of art, and this is no exception. Elijah Cummings was called the North Star of Injustice because he was a beacon for others to follow in what was just.

However, unlike other civil rights leaders, his history is less known, so this book will perfectly serve as an introduction to Cummings’ life from childhood to death. It shows how his foundation for faith and justice built him up to be the man he was.

I also loved the shout out to the library and librarians! (Though the story of his school counselor telling him he couldn’t be a lawyer was devastating, and I am so glad he proved them wrong!)

And I cannot talk about this book without talking about the beautiful illustrations. Freeman’s art brings the story to life and is so realistic!

Discussion Questions: 

  • What did you learn about Elijah Cummings?
  • How did Elijah Cummings’ early life impact his adulthood?
  • What contributions did Elijah Cummings make on the Civil Rights Movement?

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Read This If You Love: Nonfiction picture books, Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly, We March by Shane W. Evans, Harlem’s Little Blackbird: The Story of Florence Mills by Renee Watson, Freedom in Congo Square by Carole Boston Weatherford

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**Thank you to Barbara from Blue Slip Media for providing copies for review!**

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I love the Must Read challenge! I took part in 2015-2019 & 2021, so I am happy to join again! It helps me remember to read certain books!

Thank you to Carrie at There’s A Book for That for starting this challenge and to Leigh Ann of A Day in the Life and Cheriee of Library Matters for co-hosting the revival.

For those of you new to the challenge, it has you take a look at the books you wanted to read, but for whatever reason, you have not gotten to them. You then make your own personal list of books you want to commit to (trying to) read.

There is no set number of books and books can be published from any year, in any genre or format, and in any category. These books will not be the only ones you read this year but will be the ones included in your personal challenge.

Visit HERE to see the #MustReadin2021 year end updates!

Visit HERE to see the #MustReadin2022 Roundup!

2021 was my most successful #MustRead challenge I’ve had so far! I finished all but 2 books (40/42)!

For my #MustReadin2022 I let my students choose some titles for me! The ones marked * below are the ones they chose for me; the rest were chosen by me 🙂

  1. The Accidental Hero by Matt Myklusch*
  2. Alice in the Country of Hearts by Quin Rose
  3. All Four Stars by Tara Dairman*
  4. Almost American Girl by Robin Ha
  5. Amari and the Night Brothers by B.B. Alston
  6. Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids edited by Cynthia Leitich Smith
  7. Brave Enough by Kati Gardner*
  8. Breathe and Count Back from Ten by Natalia Sylvester*
  9. Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller*
  10. A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik*
  11. Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly*
  12. Delirium (and sequels) by Lauren Oliver*
  13. Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From by Jennifer De Leon
  14. Everything Sad is Untrue by Daniel Nayeri
  15. Fifty Words for Rain by Asha Lemmie*
  16. The Fire Within by Chris d’Lacey*
  17. Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart*
  18. Huda F Are You? by Huda Fahmy
  19. Hunter X Hunter by Yoshihiro Togashi
  20. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  21. The Inheritance Game by Jennifer Lynn Barnes*
  22. It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover*
  23. The Magi by Kevin M. Turner*
  24. The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen
  25. The Million Dollar Race by Matthew Ross Smith*
  26. Moving Target by Christina Diaz Gonzalez*
  27. The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart*
  28. The Nerdy Dozen by Jeff Miller*
  29. #NotYourPrincess: Voices of Native American Women edited by Lisa Charleyboy and Mary Beth Leaderdale
  30. Nubia: Real One by L.L. McKinney and Robyn Smith
  31. Paradise on Fire by Jewell Parker Rhodes*
  32. Randoms by David Liss*
  33. The Resolutions by Mia Garcia*
  34. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid*
  35. A Sitting in St. James by Rita Williams Garcia
  36. Spy School by Stuart Gibbs
  37. That’s Not What Happened by Kody Keplinger*
  38. To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo*
  39. We Were Liars by E. Lockhart*
  40. When You Look Like Us by Pamela N. Harris
  41. The Whisperer by Fiona McIntosh*
  42. Wild Blue Wonder by Carlie Sorosiak

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
Sharing Picture Books, Early Readers, Middle Grade Books, and Young Adult Books for All Ages!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly blog hop co-hosted by Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts which focuses on sharing books marketed for children and young adults. It offers opportunities to share and recommend books with each other.

The original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Happy reading!

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Tuesday: Kellee’s Favorite Books Read in 2021

**Click on any picture/link to view the post**

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Kellee

I start teaching my first UCF course, Children’s Literature, this week, so I used this weekend to get ready *SQUEE!!*

To learn more about any of these books, check out my 2022 Goodreads Challenge page  or my read bookshelf on Goodreads.

Ricki

This week, I reread Sisters of the Neversea by Cynthia Leitich Smith. It’s such a clever reinterpretation of the Peter Pan myth. I am very excited to be using it in a paper that I am writing. It is written for a middle grade audience but would be appreciated by readers of all ages.

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Ricki

I am reading Black Canary: Breaking Silence by Alexandra Monir. So far, it is great!

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Tuesday: Kellee’s #MustReadin2021 Recap & #MustReadin2022 Intro

Thursday: The Faith of Elijah Cummings: The North Star of Equal Justice by Carole Boston Weatherford, Illustrated by Laura Freeman

Saturday: Sofia’s Kids’ Corner: The Land of Stories: The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

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2021 is in the books, and I am here to celebrate my favorite books read during the year!

I’m excited for this post because I haven’t done one in a bit since I was on an award committee, but this year I can celebrate!

Here’s a summary of my year in books

Here are my favorites separated into picture books, middle grade, young adult, early readers, kid lit, older nonfiction, and graphic novels/manga!

  

And there they are! 

👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏👏

I, obviously, recommend these books wholeheartedly, but they are just 50 of so many amazing books I read in 2021–check out my READ bookshelf on Goodreads to see these & more!

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It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
Sharing Picture Books, Early Readers, Middle Grade Books, and Young Adult Books for All Ages!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly blog hop co-hosted by Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts which focuses on sharing books marketed for children and young adults. It offers opportunities to share and recommend books with each other.

The original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Happy reading!

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Thursday 12/16: Waffles and Pancake: Planetary-Yum by Drew Brockington

**Click on any picture/link to view the post**

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While we’ve been away, I (Kellee) went on vacation to Colorado, and Ricki and I got to see each other! It was the most wonderful 36 hours with one of my best friends! And the kids had such a blast together! 💖

Kellee

Here’s what I’ve read since I last updated on December 13th:

  • A Night to Die For by Lisa Schroeder: A murder mystery thriller that kept me guessing, and I couldn’t believe the reveal when it was shared. Fans of Karen McManus, Holly Jackson, and Kara Thomas will want to pick this one up!
  • Crazy Rich Asians and China Rich Girlfriend by Kevin Kwan: I devoured these books; they are addictive as they are full of humor, drama, and romance. Loved reading them, and I look forward to reading the third.
  • Shuri by Nic Stone: It is great to see Shuri get her own novel, and it is quite the adventure!

  • Dragons in a Bag and The Dragon Thief by Zetta Elliott: Oh how I love these books! What a fun concept with great characters that anyone reading is going to fall in love with. I am so looking forward to the third one coming out! (I loved it so much that I added it to my fantasy/sci-fi book club options for my UCF Children’s Lit class!)
  • Brilliant Bea by Shaina Rudolph, Illustrated by Mary Vukadinovich: With ALA Youth Media Awards around the corner, I wanted to get some picture book reading in for eligible Schneider Award picture books, and I was so happy to have found Brilliant Bea. What a great character who shows that dyslexia is more than who anyone is.
  • Another Book About Bears by Laura Bunting, Illustrated by Philip Bunting: I thought this humor was on point, so I look forward to reading more from this duo (I checked out their website and there are so many to choose from!).
  • Last Gate of the Emperor by Kwame Mbalia and Prince Joel Makonnen: What a fantastic futuristic adventure! I loved how the setting played its own part in the story, the humor that shone throughout, and the character development throughout. I was also lucky enough to write the teaching guide for it which was such a delight!

  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Big Shot by Jeff Kinney: I always read the new Diary of a Wimpy Kid, usually around Thanksgiving, but I hadn’t this year; I am glad I could squeeze it in before the end of the year! (I also want to commend Jeff Kinney for realizing that Greg and Rowley had a toxic relationship and moving away from including it.)
  • My Brother’s Husband by Gengoroh Tagame: Loved loved loved this story about a single Japanese father who meets his deceased twin brother’s husband for the first time. He must fight his own prejudice and learn to love his brother for who he was.
  • Smaller Sister by Maggie Edkins Willis: This is a graphic novel you are going to want in your libraries! It is a story of sisterhood as well as body image, anorexia, and disordered eating. It is done so tactfully and within a story that any reader will connect with.
  • Sayonara Football Vol. 2 by Naoshi Arakawa: Volume 1 ended in such an odd way, I am glad volume 2 picked up right where it left off and cleared things up for me. I think this is going to be a hit manga in my school.
  • The Snow Fell Three Graves Deep by Allan Wolf: Allan Wolf is a genius. Have you read anything by him yet? If not, fix that. This one or his Titanic novel are brilliant. The way he tackles topics, does research to immerse himself, and can tell stories from so many points of view is just so all encompassing. I mean, some of the points of view in this book, which is about the Donner Party, is from hunger (literal and figurative) and from oxen–it was fascinating to read!

To learn more about any of these books, check out my 2021 Goodreads Challenge page  or my read bookshelf on Goodreads.

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Kellee

Currently, I am not reading anything! I do have 2 teaching guides to work on, and I have some novels I’ve chosen for book clubs in my Children’s Lit class at UCF that I need to reread, but we’ll see what I do this upcoming week as we return to work.

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Tuesday: Kellee’s Favorite Books Read in 2021

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

 Signature andRickiSig

 
Share

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
Sharing Picture Books, Early Readers, Middle Grade Books, and Young Adult Books for All Ages!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly blog hop co-hosted by Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts which focuses on sharing books marketed for children and young adults. It offers opportunities to share and recommend books with each other.

The original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Happy reading!

Bold_line

We are taking a 2 week Winter Break to be with family and recharge.
We hope that you all are able to do the same!
See you in 2022!

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Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

 Signature andRickiSig

 
Share

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
Sharing Picture Books, Early Readers, Middle Grade Books, and Young Adult Books for All Ages!

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly blog hop co-hosted by Unleashing Readers and Teach Mentor Texts which focuses on sharing books marketed for children and young adults. It offers opportunities to share and recommend books with each other.

The original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Happy reading!

Bold_line

We are taking a 2 week Winter Break to be with family and recharge.
We hope that you all are able to do the same!
See you in 2022!

Bold_line

Link up below and go check out what everyone else is reading. Please support other bloggers by viewing and commenting on at least 3 other blogs. If you tweet about your Monday post, tag the tweet with #IMWAYR!

 Signature andRickiSig