My Story, My Dance: Robert Battle’s Journey to Alvin Ailey

Lesa Cline-Ransome, illus. by James E. Ransome. S&S/Wiseman, $17.99 (48p) ISBN 978-1-4814-2221-5
The Ransomes chronicle the struggles and triumphs of African-American ballet dancer turned artistic director Robert Battle, who contributes a foreword. Despite a sometimes difficult youth—he was born bowlegged, was shuttled among several family members, and wore leg braces until age six—Battle went on to become a renowned performer. Fluid pastels depict Battle’s early influences, from practicing the Moonwalk and karate to being inspired by an Alvin Ailey performance with “dancers in all shades of brown.” While the text can get bogged down in the details of the people and places in Battle’s life, it’s still a glowing, inspiring tribute to his perseverance and passion. Ages 5–10. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/07/2015
Release date: 10/27/2015
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