“How Sweet the Sound: The Story of Amazing Grace” by Carole Boston Weatherford, illustrated by Frank Morrison
In church, you sing a lot of songs. Some are just for Sunday School, and you clap when you sing them. Others make you dance right in your seat. And some songs you sing in church are very old and have a quiet, hidden meaning. In “How Sweet the Sound” by Carole Boston Weatherford, illustrated by Frank Morrison, you’ll learn about one song that feels a lot like a prayer.
Life has handed you a lot of chances. You’ve taken some, for good or not. Others, you’ve passed up, and regretted it. Maybe you’d be richer today. Maybe you’d be poorer. For sure, you’d have an existence unlike what you have now and, as in the new novel “Better Late Than Never” by Kimberla Lawson Roby, you wonder what might’ve been…
That’s what it said on the side of the box. Don’t shake it, don’t bump it, and whatever you do, don’t drop it. What’s inside there is important enough for careful lifting but, as you’ll see in the new book, “Mabel and Sam at Home” by Linda Urban, illustrated by Hadley Hooper, the box itself isn’t just a box.
“We have to talk.” It’s never good when someone tells you that. Even if it’s said with a smile and a pat on the back, you can feel doom in those words. “We have to talk” never helps anyone except when, as in “What Truth Sounds Like” by Michael Eric Dyson, it does.
Please tell me a family story. You never get tired of hearing about your Mom and Dad, and how much fun they had on their first date; or that one tale about your uncle (so funny!); or the story about your cousin’s very first car. Please tell me a story, you ask, and in “Grandad Mandela” by Zazi, Ziwelene & Zindzi Mandela and Sean Qualls, two children hear of their great-grandfather’s heroism.
Oh, the things you’ve heard! You’ve been told statements that aren’t true, and that made you sad. Myths kept you from your full potential. Tall tales were told to provoke you. And with the new book “I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness” by Austin Channing Brown, well, sit down. You’re about to get an eyeful.
Pay attention. Eyes forward, ears open. You’ve heard those things before in your life, and now you say them to yourself, your kids, and your employees. But do they hear what you say now… or, as in the new book “Note to Self,” collected and introduced by Gayle King, will your words ring back in the future?
You want no part of that. In fact, the farther away you are from whatever-it-is, the happier you’ll be. Nope, some things are not your friend. Some things are not good for you at all. And as you’ll see in the new book “Black Klansman: A Memoir” by Ron Stallworth, some people can’t resist some things like that.
One minute. That’s all it can take to change history. Sixty seconds, as long as an average TV commercial or two, a few blinks of your eyes and nothing is ever the same. And things can keep changing, as you’ll see in the new book “The Heavens Might Crack” by Jason Sokol.
Your to-do list is a mile long. Every day, you add three things for every one you cross off and you’re starting to resent That List. What’s worse: accommodating everything on the list means there’s no more you for you. In “Breaking Up with Busy” by Yvonne Tally, you’ll see that it’s time for the list to get lost.