Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

I have a dream

I have a dream

Martin Luther King Jr.
Nonfiction Picture Book
For ages 5 and up
Scholastic, 2007   ISBN: 978-0590205177

Many of us have heard that Martin Luther King, Jr. gave a great speech in the summer of 1963. We may have heard a few of the words and thus understood that it was a powerful speech which moved the hearts of the many people who heard it on that day. Very few of us however have actually read the speech, and have thus taken in some of the most meaningful words that have ever said in public.

In this beautifully presented picture book fifteen award winning artists including Jerry Pinkney and Leo and Diane Dillon have created pictures to accompany the words that Martin Luther King Jr. made on that momentous day. Quotes from the speech annotate the art to great effect and the pictures themselves illustrate Martin Luther King’s words beautifully showing the suffering of the African American people and giving readers a picture of what Martin Luther King Jr. hoped for in the future.

The foreword for this very special picture book was written by Martin Luther King’s wife, a woman who was a force in the civil rights movement and someone who made a considerable contribution to the world of children’s literature. In addition to the text of the speech there is a brief biography of Martin Luther King Jr. in the back of the book. Finally, each of the fifteen artists – all of whom have won the Coretta Scott King Award or Honor Book Award for their work – describes what inspired them to create their art and what the words of the speech meant to them on a personal level.

This is a book which everyone should read and this illustrated edition not only gives the reader food for thought but it also delights the eye.