Thursday, September 17, 2009

Bird by Zetta Elliott

Mehkai is a young African American who loves to draw. He says that with art "you can fix stuff that's messed up / just by using your imagination / or rubbing your eraser / over the page." What he can't fix are the troubles in his family, like his older brother's drug addiction. His granddad tells him, "Some broken things can't be fixed."

Shadra Strickland's delicate artwork has a lightness to it that adds to the ultimate hopefulness of Elliott's free verse. This is an excellent book for adults to initiate discussion with children in Grades 1 through 6.

Note added May 8, 2011: Zetta Elliott wrote about representations of Blackness in Canadian youth literature in her blog recently. See Navigating the Great White North.


Arlene said...

Hey Lindy, I read this book just this week and have to agree that it is a great conversation starter. I plan on reading it to my grade sevens. Arlene

Lindy said...

That is such a great idea. Let me know how it is received.