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Kid Konnection: Crow

December 31, 2011

Moses lives in Wilmington, NC in 1898 with his parents and maternal grandmother.  His grandmother and mother were born into slavery and his father is an educated man who works for the Wilmington Daily Record, the only daily newspaper for black people in the South.  Moses’ family was part of a thriving middle class black community and race relations were pretty good – some neighborhoods were integrated and four of the ten aldermen in Wilmington were black.  Things changed late in 1898 when the Red Shirts became organized.

Crow, by Barbara Wright, is a fictionalized account of the Wilmington Race Riot, told through the eyes of young Moses, and it is a gem of a book.  Wright combines historical events with the story of a loving, politically active family to form a fantastic story.  The main characters in the book are fictional, but there are many historical people and events included in the book.  Before I read this book, I knew nothing about the Wilmington Race Riot and I was just appalled by what I read.  I’ve done more research since and was dismayed to read of so much progress destroyed in such a short time.

I loved Moses and his family.  His father believed in and stressed education and his grandmother still believed in the old ways.  Moses loved and respected them both, even when they disagreed.  He was worried about school and family and he and his best friend were going through some growing pains.  Moses was confused by the race riots and struggled to understand them but, in the course of the book, grew up a lot and made some great decisions.  He wasn’t perfect but he tried to make good decisions and please his parents.  I found myself cheering for him as I read the book.

I don’t feel like I’m doing it justice, but Crow is a book to watch for.  I have a feeling you’ll be hearing a lot about it in the coming year.  It’s written for ages 8 and up, but I think younger readers will need an adult to help them understand some of the complexities of the story.  I think adults will find this book fascinating and many teachers will be incorporating it into their classrooms.  There’s a lot to discuss in this wonderful book, so you’ll want to be sure to get it for the young people in your life!

For more children’s books reviews, go to Booking Mama’s feature, Kid Konnection. If you’d like to participate in Kid Konnection and share a post about anything related to children’s books (picture, middle grade, or young adult) from the past week,  leave a comment as well as a link on her site.

Review copy provided by Random House.  I am an Indiebound Affliate.
13 Comments leave one →
  1. December 31, 2011 6:31 am

    It sounds like a good one and I hope it will be on top in the coming year 🙂

  2. December 31, 2011 9:05 am

    This sounds interesting. I hope it gets used in the classroom.

  3. December 31, 2011 9:29 am

    This sounds great! I hope I can find it at my library!

  4. December 31, 2011 10:12 am

    This might be a book I can read with our 9-year-old. She’s very sensitive, but also very aware/concerned about injustice.

    Thanks for the thoughtful review, Kathy.

  5. December 31, 2011 10:15 am

    This looks like one I would enjoy too Kathy!

  6. December 31, 2011 10:32 am

    This looks like something I should share with my daughter. Thanks, Kathy!

  7. December 31, 2011 10:32 am

    I hadn’t heard of this incident, but the book sounds like it does a great job explaining it for a wide audience. I am so glad that you enjoyed this one, and I am going to have to think about grabbing it for myself and my kids so that we can learn all about the Wilmington Race riot too. Great review today, my friend!

  8. December 31, 2011 12:31 pm

    Oh, I’m so glad you enjoyed this one. I have it to read and am so excited to pick it up after I finish my current book.

  9. December 31, 2011 4:02 pm

    Thanks for highlighting this book. I am putting it on my list of books to check out. This would be a great book to read with my daughter.

  10. December 31, 2011 4:56 pm

    Thanks! I’ve added it to my TBR list.

  11. January 1, 2012 1:30 pm

    I like the sound of this one!

  12. January 2, 2012 9:43 am

    I hadn’t heard of that riot either. CAN NOT wait to read this one!

  13. January 2, 2012 3:50 pm

    I need to get a copy of this one..sounds fantastic!

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