About the Book Frederick Douglass was born a slave. He was taken from his mother as a baby, and separated from his grandparents when he was six. He suffered hunger and abuse, but miraculously, he learned how to read. Frederick read newspapers left in the street, and secretly collected spellings from neighborhood children. Words, he knew, would set him free.
When Frederick was twenty, he escaped to the North, where he spread his abolitionist beliefs through newspaper articles, autobiographies, and speeches. He believed that all people-regardless of color or gender-were entitled to equal rights. It is Douglass's words, as well as his life, that still provide hope and inspiration across generations.
In this installment of the critically acclaimed Big Words series, Doreen Rappaport captures Frederick's journey from boy to man, from slavery to freedom, by weaving Frederick's powerful words with her own. London Ladd's strong and evocative illustrations combine with the text to create a moving portrait of an extraordinary life.
My Take on the Book
This is a powerful book. It is powerful not only in the excellent text written by Doreen Rappaport, but also in the detailed and researched illustrations by London Lada. To me it is a story that adults and children should read. The messages of Frederick Douglass and the way he led his life is an inspiration to us all, even today.
The author shows clearly the determination that Frederick Douglass had to gain an education, his freedom, and equality for men and women alike. He was courageous and took enormous chances that endangered his life.
The author included many of Frederick Douglass' quotes. When you read these you will easily feel and see the kind of man he was and how his life experiences formed him.
Doreen Rappaport certainly wrote an excellent biography. Her notes at the back of the book explains to the reader the kind of research she used in preparing for the text. London Lada also researched. He would try to put himself into the time period that Frederick lived so he could accurately paint the illustrations.
The book is excellent. It would be a great addition to a family or classroom library and read often.
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