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|Bad news for outlaws : the remarkable life of Bass Reeves, deputy U.S. marshal|
Author: Nelson, Vaunda Micheaux
The story of a remarkable African American hero of the Old West.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.20
Points: .5 Quiz: 131426
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 5.60
Points: 3.0 Quiz: 47561
Coretta Scott King Author Award, 2010
Common Core Standards
Grade 3 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 3.RI Key Ideas & Details
Grade 4 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 4.RI Key Ideas & Details
Grade 4 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 4.RI Craft & Structure
Grade 4 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 4.RI Integration of Knowledge & Ideas
Grade 4 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 4.RI Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 4 → Reading → RI Informational Text → Texts Illustrating the Complexity, Quality, & Rang
Grade 4 → Reading → CCR College & Career Readiness Anchor Standards fo
Grade 5 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 5.RI Key Ideas & Details
Grade 5 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 5.RI Craft & Structure
Grade 5 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 5.RI Integration of Knowledge & Ideas
Grade 5 → Reading → RI Informational Text → 5.RI Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 5 → Reading → RI Informational Text → Texts Illustrating the Complexity, Quality, & Rang
Grade 5 → Reading → CCR College & Career Readiness Anchor Standards fo
Kirkus Reviews (+) (10/15/09)
School Library Journal (+) (11/01/09)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (01/10)
The Hornbook (+) (11/09)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 10/01/2009 Nelson and Christie know the proper way to open a western—with a showdown. Young readers first see outlaw Jim Webb bursting through a glass window; then lawman Bass Reeves’ eye sighting down the barrel of his Winchester rifle. After that, kids will have no trouble loping into this picture-book biography. Born a slave, Reeves became one of the most feared and respected Deputy U.S. Marshals to tame the West. Nelson’s anecdotal account gives this criminally overlooked frontier hero the same justice that Gary Paulsen did in his book for slightly older readers, The Legend of Bass Reeves (2006). The text, especially, gets into the tall-tale spirit of things (“Bass had a big job. And it suited him right down to the ground. Everything about him was big.”), while the dramatic scenes captured in Christie’s stately artwork promise revisitations to the lawman’s story. An exciting subject captured with narrative panache and visual swagger, Bass Reeves stands to finally gain his share of adulation from kids drawn to the rough-and-tumble Old West. - Copyright 2009 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 11/01/2009 Gr 3–8— Reeves is an unsung hero of the American West whose honesty and sense of duty are an inspiration to all. In a frontier brimming with treachery and lawlessness, this African-American peace officer stood out as a fearless figure of unparalleled integrity, arresting more than 3,000 outlaws during his 32 years of service as a deputy U.S. marshal, all without suffering an injury. He was a former slave who became a successful farmer and family man before accepting the appointment to serve as a lawman in the Indian Territory in 1875. While Gary Paulsen's The Legend of Bass Reeves (Random, 2006) mixes fact and fiction to great effect, Nelson chooses to keep her telling as close to documented research as possible. Selected anecdotes ranging from a humorous encounter with a skunk to an intense gunfight with an outlaw provide a sense of the man's courage and character. The text is chock-full of colorful turns of phrase that will engage readers who don't "cotton to" nonfiction (a glossary of "Western Words" is included). Christie's memorable paintings convey Reeves's determination and caring, while rugged brushstrokes form the frontier terrain. Youngsters will find much to admire here.—Lisa Glasscock, Columbine Public Library, Littleton, CO - Copyright 2009 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 01/01/2010 When it comes to tales of the Wild West, it’s a lot easier to find colorful scoundrels and complex antiheroes than good guys, but here Nelson makes a convincing case that as heroes go, Bass Reeves was the real deal. Born a slave in Texas, Reeves initially ended up on the wrong side of the law after striking his owner, a capital crime for a slave. The end of the Civil War brought Reeves freedom and safety from prosecution, and he settled near the Indian Territory where he had taken refuge as an outlaw. When the need arose for deputy marshals to round up criminals, a man like Bass, who knew the region intimately, was a natural choice, and he embarked on the the most notable years of his adult life. Nelson tells of his disguises, ruses, and wit in the zesty style of a tall tale, but she makes it clear this is no whimsical flight of fancy: “Bass came across an angry mob lynching a man. Without a word, Bass cut the man down and put him on the back of his sorrel. This was near as risky as a grasshopper landing on an anthill. But the mob just watched in awe as he rode off.” Christie provides broad-brushed, muscular paintings of a commanding Reeves, as dignified in slouch hat disguise as in his black suit and Stetson. End matter includes a photograph of Bass Reeves, a glossary of Western terms, a timeline, bibliographies, and notes on related historical topics. The unintimidating picture-book format will be a boon to struggling biography-report writers and a delight to anyone who simply wants to mosey through Western lore. EB - Copyright 2010 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.