Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Cracking the wall

Cracking the wall

Eileen Lucas
Illustrator:  Mark Anthony 
Non Fiction
For ages 6 to 9
Lerner, 1997   ISBN: 157505227X

In 1954 the Supreme Court of the United States decided that schools in their country could no longer be segregated. Efforts to integrate schools were met with extreme resistance. Then, in 1957 nine African American high school students dared to make the move to Central High, an all white school in Little Rock Arkansas.

The nine students, boys and girls of different ages, knew that it was going to be difficult. They knew that they would be welcomed with open arms. They knew that some people would deeply resent their presence at Central High. And yet, they were determined to go ahead and attend the school come what may.

This excellent title in the “On my own history” series captures the danger that the Little Rock Nine faced when they made the choice to attend a white high school. Young readers will come to appreciate how much courage these young people had, and they will better understand what it was like to be an African American in the segregated south in the 1950s.