Before She was Harriet

The Story of Harriet Tubman

Before She was Harriet

By:  Cline-Ransome, Lesa
Ransome, James E.

$25.95 Hardback
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Holiday House Inc

Limited ***

9.0 X 11.0 in
32 pg

JUVENILE NONFICTION / History / United States / Civil War Period (1850-1877)
JUVENILE NONFICTION / Biography & Autobiography / Social Activists
JUVENILE NONFICTION / People & Places / United States / African American

Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Book

Charlotte Zolotow Award Highly Commended Title

NCTE Notable Poetry Book

Center for the Study of Multicultural Children’s Literature (CSMCL) Best Book of the Year

Booklist Editors’ Choice

Kirkus Reviews Best Picture Book

EUREKA! Nonfiction Honor Award

NAACP Image Award Nominee for Outstanding Literary Work–Children

A lush and lyrical biography of Harriet Tubman, written in verse and illustrated by an award-winning artist.
We know her today as Harriet Tubman, but in her lifetime she was called by many names. As General Tubman she was a Union spy. As Moses she led hundreds to freedom on the Underground Railroad. As Minty she was a slave whose spirit could not be broken. An evocative poem and opulent watercolors come together to honor a woman of humble origins whose courage and compassion make her larger than life.

"Simultaneously simple enough for young children to understand and sophisticated enough to inspire adults."Booklist (Starred)

"A memorable, lyrical reverse-chronological walk through the life of an American icon. While the text introduces readers to the details of Tubman's life, Ransome's use of watercolor . . . reveals Tubman's humanity, determination, drive, and hope. Ransome's lavishly detailed and expansive double-page spreads situate young readers in each time and place as the text takes them further into the past. A picture book more than worthy of sharing the shelf with Alan Schroeder and Jerry Pinkney's Minty (1996) and Carole Boston Weatherford and Kadir Nelson's Moses (2006)."Kirkus Reviews (Starred)

 "This striking reverse chronology opens with a regal portrait of an elderly Harriet Tubman, after which the Ransomes chart her decades of work in pursuit of equality. [Lesa Cline-Ransome’s] incisive free verse emphasize[s] Tubman’s bravery in the face of a multitude of dangers. James Ransome’s watercolor portraits imbue Tubman with a steely determination—at every age—in lush scenes often set against blazing summer skies and blue, moonlit nights. Beyond its recognition of all that Tubman accomplished, the book serves as a powerful reminder of how all children carry within them the potential for greatness.Publishers Weekly (Starred)

"Each episode in her compelling life is illustrated by a luminous watercolor. The expertly done expressive paintings evoke Tubman’s strength and integrity showing “the wisp of a woman with the courage of a lion.” This lovely tribute effectively communicates Tubman’s ­everlasting bravery and resolve, and will ­inspire curious readers to learn more."School Library Journal (Starred)

Lesa Cline-Ransome has written ten picture books for children, including two ALA Notable Books. Her work focuses on African American history.

- James E. Ransome’s numerous accolades include a Coretta Scott King Award. The Ransomes live in Rhinebeck, New York.