Tommy Traveller in the World of Black History

Tom Feelings, Author Writers & Readers Publishing $13.95 (48p) ISBN 978-0-86316-202-2
Unable to find any more books on black history in his library, Tommy Traveler is introduced to Dr. Gray, who has a private collection on the subject. During the reading sessions at Dr. Gray's home Tommy imagines himself transported to various historical periods. Whether accompanying Aesop to the marketplace in the sixth century B.C. or watching Joe Louis fight in 1936, Tommy appears to experience the past struggles of his people first-hand. Although well-intentioned, Feelings's ( Jambo Means Hello ; Moja Means One ) latest book disappoints. Versions of these accounts appeared as a weekly comic strip series during the late 1950s, though today they have a pedantic tone that occasionally borders on the militant. The newly extended and colorized strips are unattractive and difficult to read, while the illustrations are static and overwhelmed by flat pink and brown tones. The selections vary greatly in length: one-page presentations on Frederick Douglass and Emmett Till seem incomplete when compared with the lengthier passages. There is certainly a need for appealing books on black history, but for now young readers may be better served elsewhere. Ages 7-11. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/29/1990
Release date: 09/01/1990
Paperback - 42 pages - 978-0-86316-211-4
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