|Brave ballerina : the story of Janet Collins (Who Did It First? Book)|
Author: Meadows, Michelle
A picture book tribute to Janet Collins, the first African American principal dancer at the Metropolitan Opera House.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 3.30
Points: .5 Quiz: 502614
Kirkus Reviews (11/01/18)
School Library Journal (+) (12/01/18)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 12/01/2018 PreS-Gr 2—Young dancers will find inspiration in the first picture book biography written about groundbreaking dancer Janet Collins. In tidy four-line stanzas, Meadows tells Collins's life story, describing her path to stardom as the first black prima ballerina to perform at the Metropolitan Opera House. Each page begins in a similar fashion, setting the scene and continuing in rhyming verse. ("This is the audience, lined up in rows, cheering her on as she danced on her toes.") Though the format is constrictive, there is not an awkward word or rhythm to be found. Collins's story is told masterfully, with additional background information in an author's note. Glenn (Mommy's Khimar) fills each page with the strength and beauty of dance, focusing on the graceful movement of Collins and her emotive expressions. VERDICT This book radiates with the joy of dance. A first purchase for most collections.—Clara Hendricks, Cambridge Public Library, MA - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 12/15/2018 Told in verse, this picture-book biography of Janet Collins joins a growing number of books highlighting African American ballerinas. Most of the four-line stanzas begin with the words This is (This is the girl / who danced in the breeze / to the swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, / of towering trees). The text touches on the discrimination Collins had to overcome in order to realize her dream (This is the dancer / who found her way in / but learned she would / have to lighten her skin) and the acceptance she eventually found: “This is the class, / a welcoming place, / that focused on talent / regardless of race.” Earth-toned illustrations depict the fluid dance movements of ballerinas. The final spread shows Collins on stage at the Metropolitan Opera House in 1951, a real triumph. A tribute to a determined woman who, despite being met with resistance, went on to accomplish what she set out to do. An author's note, sources, and further reading materials are appended. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.