cover image Leontyne Price: Voice of a Century

Leontyne Price: Voice of a Century

Carole Boston Weatherford, illus. by Raul Colón. Knopf, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-375-85606-8

Weatherford and Colón create a rapturously described, evocatively illustrated account of the life of groundbreaking African-American opera singer Leontyne Price. Her musical path began in the segregated South where, as a child, she was inspired by hymns, opera music on the radio, and the success of Marian Anderson. Price’s natural talent eventually led her to Juilliard, theatres, and television. Colón works in subdued blues, browns, and creams, textured with the fine lines that are his trademark. Yet when Price sings, fiery, vibrant shapes represent the music pouring out of her as she appears in Porgy and Bess, Madama Butterfly, and Aida. While Weatherford addresses the barriers Price faced, her love of music and the presence of those who supported her are deeply felt: “The song of her soul soared on the breath of her ancestors.” Ages 5–9. Illustrator’s agency: Morgan Gaynin. (Dec.)