cover image The Wedding Portrait

The Wedding Portrait

Innosanto Nagara. Triangle Square, $17.95 (36p) ISBN 978-1-60980-802-0

When is it okay to break the rules? While explaining the backstory of a family photo that shows a bride and groom in front of a row of armed police officers, Nagara (A Is for Activist) unpacks the idea of nonviolent civil disobedience in simple, accessible language. He opens with the example of segregation. The protests led by Claudette Colvin and others weren’t raucous. First one bus rider refused to move, then another, then another, “and guess what? In the end, the laws were changed. This is called civil disobedience.” Examples of boycotts and other forms of protest follow, taking readers from India to Colombia and into the present day with the formation of Black Lives Matter. And the photograph on the wall? It commemorates the wedding day of Nagara and his wife, who celebrated by attending an antinuclear demonstration. Nagara’s collages represent each story with the impact of political posters. He lays out the different ways that oppressive laws have been successfully resisted while remaining essentially lighthearted, as when he describes spending his wedding day under arrest: “It was like a super long time-out.” Ages 6–9. (Oct.)