cover image The Walk (A Stroll to the Poll)

The Walk (A Stroll to the Poll)

Winsome Bingham, illus. by E.B. Lewis. Abrams, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4197-4772-4

A Black child narrator accompanies her grandmother as they embark on a lengthy walk in this significant picture book about the power of voting. Starting at their home, the two trek through several neighborhoods, stopping along the way—at a barber shop, a church, and Mrs. Wong’s—to pick up other “treasured souls” (“traveling in a group,/ talking like family,/ together, a community”). Though the child doesn’t know where the walk will take them, understated dialogue shows the adults around her alluding to the tradition’s importance: “I thought after 2008, I could skip a few of these walks. But I see we need them more than ever.” Hints about voting inequality (“The walk wasn’t always this long... But folks keep making it longer”) provide subtle context about where the stroll is taking the group—and, when they arrive at the polling site, why showing up and casting a vote are a must. Portraiture-centered watercolor illustrations from Lewis (You Are My Pride) bring a clear-eyed realism to thoughtful conversational text by Bingham (Soul Food Sunday); together, the two tackle a weighty topic by leaving plenty of room for additional discussion. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)