The Day Gogo Went to Vote: South Africa, 1994

Elinor Batezat Sisulu, Author, Sharon Wilson, Author, Sharon Wilson, Illustrator
Elinor Batezat Sisulu, Author, Sharon Wilson, Author, Sharon Wilson, Illustrator Little Brown and Company $15.45 (32p) ISBN 978-0-316-70267-6
Reviewed on: 04/01/1996
Release date: 04/01/1996
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-0-316-70271-3
Prebound-Other - 978-0-606-17383-4
Prebound-Other - 978-0-613-22837-4
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Sisulu's stirring story was inspired by her experience working at a polling booth during South Africa's 1994 democratic elections, the first in which blacks were allowed to vote. Thembi, the ingenuous six-year-old narrator, describes how her 100-year-old great-grandmother, Gogo, makes the long trip to the polls to cast her vote. When she first announces her plans, the family is shocked, because Gogo is too frail to leave the yard. ""You want me to die not having voted?"" Gogo tells Thembi's anxious parents. The oldest voter in the township, Gogo emerges from the voting booth to the sound of applause and the glare of camera flashes, and the reader, too, will feel the momentousness of the occasion and the characters' jubilation. Debut illustrator Wilson's sketchy pastel illustrations forgo detail in favor of broad, strong strokes, ably conveying the tale's high emotional pitch. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
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