|Emmanuel's dream : the true story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah|
Author: Thompson, Laurie Ann
The true story of a boy born in Ghana with one deformed leg, who overcame adversity to become an advocate for those with disabilities.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 4.40
Points: .5 Quiz: 171665
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: K-2
Reading Level: 3.70
Points: 1.0 Quiz: 65329
School Library Journal (03/01/15)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (03/15)
The Hornbook (00/03/15)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 02/15/2015 Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah was born in Ghana with a severely deformed leg, but with boundless self-determination, he became a world-renowned athlete and activist. In the beginning of her straightforward, free-verse text, Thompson only lightly touches on what it’s like for disabled people in Ghana: “Most people thought he would be useless, or worse— / a curse.” But most of Emmanuel’s childhood is characterized by discrimination. When he tries to find work to support his sickly single mother, most people “told him to go out and beg / like the other disabled people did.” Stalwart Emmanuel, however, is resolute about making a difference, and he obtains a bicycle to travel around Ghana, nearly 400 miles in 10 days, to prove just how capable disabled people can be. Qualls’ illustrations—simple line drawings and stylish, expressive figures filled with layers of rich, warm color on pale, thickly painted backgrounds—capture Emmanuel’s triumphs beautifully. An author’s note describes Emmanuel’s activism in more detail, particularly the Persons with Disabilities Act, passed in Ghana following his bike ride. - Copyright 2015 Booklist.
Bulletin for the Center... - 03/01/2015 This picture-book biography chronicles the life of Ghanaian disability activist Emmanuel Ofusu Yeboah, born with only “one strong leg” in a country where the disabled were generally shuttered behind closed doors and or set to beg for their living. Driven by an uncompromising mother (she “told him he could have anything, but he would have to get it himself”), he broke through social and physical barriers, eventually finding work in the country’s capital and sending money home. He then embarked on an activist project: to ride a bicycle around Ghana, making a national statement about what a disabled person can accomplish, in a journey that made him a “national hero.” The book’s a bit light on actual information about its subject, and the triumphant finish (“One person is enough to change the world”) is only explained in the following author’s note; that said, it’s a tough story to resist and it’s ringingly told here, with a refreshingly pragmatic note in the book’s description of Yeboah’s acquisition of funding and arrangement of support vehicles. Qualls’ mixed-media art balances stylized background shapes against crisp-edged figures, often in luminous sunset hues, in the foregrounds; rhythm in color and shapes is particularly effective in the full-bleed spreads, in scenes sometimes teeming with well-patterned energy and sometimes wide open as Yeboah pauses on the brink of his destiny. There are no source notes, but the author’s note points readers to the Oprah-narrated documentary Emmanuel’s Gift. DS - Copyright 2015 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
School Library Journal - 03/01/2015 K-Gr 2—This powerful and winning picture book tells the story of a young man overcoming the odds. Born in Ghana with a deformed left leg, Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah experienced stigma as a result of his disability: his father abandoned the family, and many assumed that the boy would be little more than a burden. However, with the encouragement of his mother, Yeboah refused to give up, hopping to school (instead of walking) and even learning to play soccer and cycle, despite receiving no extra help or accommodations. Thompson's lucidly written text explains how Yeboah cycled 400 miles in 2001 to raise awareness, forever changing how Ghanaians perceived those with disabilities. The narrative is simply and clearly written, and the illustrations are skillfully rendered in charmingly emotive ink and watercolor collages. A brief author's note explains how Yeboah inspired legislation upholding equal rights for the disabled and how he continues to make strides, working with organizations that provide wheelchairs to those who need them and setting up a scholarship fund for children with disabilities. VERDICT This uplifting account will resonate with readers and supplement global and cultural studies. A triumph.—Kathryn Diman, Bass Harbor Memorial Library, Bernard, ME - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.