|Ida B. Wells (Discovering History's Heroes)
Author: Bailey, Diane
A biography of the African-American journalist and activist who led an anti-lynching crusade in the United States in the 1890s.
|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.90
Points: 3.0 Quiz: 505102
Kirkus Reviews (06/01/19)
School Library Journal (08/01/19)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 06/01/2019 Ida B. Wells comes alive in this well-crafted biography. Those who already know her as an ardent fighter for civil rights will also get to know her as a sister, business woman, journalist, wife, and mother. As she hits the high points of Wells' life, Bailey weaves in social issues, discrimination, the state of education in African American communities, and for Wells, the most searing events she experienced: lynchings. Her dedication to eradicating this shocking practice takes up much of the book, including her surprising differences with Booker T. Washington over his lackluster responses to lynchings. This squabble is also showcased as part of the push-and-pull around civil rights in the African American community as well as in the larger world. Throughout, Wells comes across as a woman who, though small in stature, was a giant in pushing forth her agenda, even in dangerous circumstances. While the cover illustration is not particularly inviting and there are no illustrations, historical engravings, or drawings to break up the text, the story speaks for itself. - Copyright 2019 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 08/01/2019 Gr 4–6—Bailey explores Wells's journey to becoming a prominent part of the fight for African American equality in the United States. Readers learn about Wells from her time as a young teen to her death. She is an often overlooked part of the history of civil rights, but Bailey does a superb job of maintaining readers' interest through a chronological account of Wells's journey. The author highlights particularly tense moments when Wells's work became dangerous, such as being a vocal crusader against lynching. As a young teen, Wells made the decision to care for her siblings after her parents' death. She faced considerable challenges, as supporting a large family with a meager education at the turn of the century was difficult. Additionally, many people thought the odds were against Wells due to her race and gender. She proved her naysayers wrong and used her skills, grit, and determination to become an undeniable force in journalism. Each chapter has bolded words that are clearly explained in context, and a glossary is provided at the end of the book. This vocabulary addition is helpful with terms that require some content knowledge for full understanding. VERDICT Readers who appreciate nonfiction and biographies will enjoy the quick pace and suspenseful moments detailed in this look at the life of Ida B. Wells. Bailey's writing is clear and accessible to young readers who will understand the perilous risks Wells took as she fought against racism.—April Sanders, Spring Hill College, Mobile, AL - Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.