Any time is great to find books that teach history and affirm a place in the world for everybody, and that鈥檚 exactly what 鈥淏rown Girls Rule鈥 by Ashok Banker and “Fighting with Love: The Legacy of John Lewis鈥 by Lessa Cline-Ransome is able to do for readers. Both books, suitable for elementary-age children, are colorful, beautifully illustrated, and available through your favorite bookseller. 

“Brown Girls Rule”


Illustrated by

32 Pages

Ages 5-8

Publisher: Beaming Books

Ashok Banker has written a short, easy-to-read poetry-style book where brown girls from many cultures are affirmed. It is an inclusive, diverse look at brown girls aspiring to be politicians, athletes, scientists, teachers, queens, and leaders in countless other roles.

Brittany Bond鈥檚 illustrations are sharp and colorful, showing brown girls with a range of abilities, girls working together on projects, and taking on advocacy roles. 

鈥淏rown Girls Rule鈥 is a winner by showing how self-awareness grows into self-love and respect. Young brown girls will be empowered by this book and be eager to share with friends.

“Fighting with Love: The Legacy of John Lewis鈥


Illustrated by

48 Pages

Ages 4-8

Publisher: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books 

John Robert Lewis was born to be a leader for peace. Author Lessa Cline-Ransome takes us on Lewis鈥 life calling, from his birth in Troy, Alabama, to his final days in July 2020.

Lewis was filled with love because that was the environment set by his parents. 

This book follows Lewis from his rural upbringing working in the cotton field to hearing a young Martin Luther King, Jr. on the radio, going away to seminary school in Nashville, and getting involved in civil rights work. The young student immediately joined the Nashville chapter of the NAACP, where he met other young civil rights activists, including Marion Barry, former mayor of the District of Columbia. 

As an advocate for equal justice, Lewis was involved in protest movements and was arrested multiple times. He was severely beaten when marching over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. 

This book does not go into Lewis鈥 political life because the focus is on how the man became who he was to the world. The love and the people around Lewis had a common vision of equal justice.

James E. Ransome, an award-winning illustrator, produced action-oriented images that make it easy to experience Lewis as a child hauling cotton, being attentive to what he鈥檚 hearing on the radio, and being arrested for peaceful protesting.

Though this book is targeted at young children, there is a bonus that adults will appreciate. At the end of the book is a timeline following Lewis from birth to his passing in 2020. There are also sources for many significant quotes from Lewis.

 “Fighting with Love: The Legacy of John Lewis鈥 will be a book that will hold a special place on your bookshelf.

Brenda Siler is an award-winning journalist and public relations strategist. Her communications career began in college as an advertising copywriter, a news reporter, public affairs producer/host and a...

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