The Old African
Julius A Lester (A) and Jerry Pinkney (ILT) (A)
List Price: $21.99 (Hardcover - History / African Slaves / Freedom and Hope - 2005)
Description: An elderly slave who is also the keeper of a power that brings comfort and, ultimately, salvation to his people uses the spiritual power of his mind to ease the suffering of his fellow slaves and eventually lead them back to Africa. Based on an actual incident from black history. As the story opens, the Old African is watching a boy being whipped on a plantation in Georgia. He is putting a picture into the minds of his comrades, a picture of water as soft and cool as a lullaby and the picture stops the boys pain. The Old African doesnt speak, he hasn't since he was brought over on a slave ship. Why should he when there is no one who would understand. As he cares for the boy, who had been whipped for running away, a hope sprouts in his mind, a way to return home. So he uses his powers to take his people on an incredible journey home. Lesters story is based on a legend about Ybo Landing, GA, where a group of slaves walked into the water, saying they were walking to Africa. His resulting novella-length allegory about spirit, memory, and freedom shows how hope can live in a people even whenever the spirit dies. (80 pgs) Ages 9-12
Ashay says, "I absolutely love this book and I highly recommend it for your collection and or school library. I love how Jerry Pinkney and Julius Lester converge to tell this story. It is a great and important story for all children as it tells of an ancestor's mighty triumph over a horrible oppression that he eventually escaped. A very powerful and touching story. I couldnt put the book down. Must have for the library."
Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 9.2 x 0.6 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds