*Starred Review* This compelling picture book is based on the historic sit-in 50 years ago by four college students who tried to integrate a Woolworth's lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina. Food-related wordplay adds layers to the free verse, as in the lines about the protesters' recipe for integration: "Combine black with white / to make sweet justice." The double-page spreads in watercolor and thick ink lines show both the scene in Woolworth's and across America as blacks and whites organize sit-ins and watch coverage of protests on TV. Finally, the young people at the counter get what they order, "served to them exactly the way they wanted it––well done." The recipe metaphors are repetitive, but at the core of the exciting narrative are scenes that show the difficulty of facing hatred: "tougher than any school test." Closing pages discuss the role of adults, including Ella Baker and then presidents Kennedy and Johnson, and include a detailed civil rights time line, "a final helping" about the historic struggle, and a bibliography. Even young children will grasp the powerful, elemental, and historic story of those who stood up to oppressive authority and changed the world. Copyright 2010 Booklist Reviews.
Publishers Weekly Reviews
The latest collaboration by this husband-and-wife team (the Caldecott Honor book Duke Ellington: The Piano Prince and His Orchestra) recreates the renowned 1960 sit-in staged by four black college students at a Greensboro "whites only" lunch counter. The narrative incorporates a steady stream of food metaphors, noting that the students ignored the law's "recipe" for segregation ("a bitter mix") replacing it the "new brew" of integration. Unfortunately, this device is more trite than moving ("Their order was simple: A double dose of peace, with nonviolence on the side") and, at times, can come across as glib. Brief quotations by Martin Luther King Jr. appear in large, blocky text, emphasizing his influence on the actions of this quartet as well as those who followed their lead, staging sit-ins across the South. Brian Pinkney's sinuous watercolor and ink art conveys the solidity and determination of the activists as well as a building energy that grew out of their act of civil disobedience. A succinct civil rights time line and additional facts and suggested reading about the topic round out this account. Ages 6–up. (Feb.)
[Page 50]. Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews
Gr 3–6—Through effectively chosen words, Andrea Pinkney brings understanding and meaning to what four black college students accomplished on February 1, 1960, by sitting down at a Woolworth lunch counter in Greensboro, NC. Her repeated phrase, "Their order was simple. A doughnut and coffee with cream on the side," along with other food metaphors, effectively emphasizes the men's determination to undo the injustices of segregation in a peaceful protest, which eventually led up to the 1966 Supreme Court ruling against racial discrimination. With swirling swabs of color that masterfully intertwine with sometimes thin, sometimes thick lines, Brian Pinkney cleverly centers the action and brings immediacy to the pages. Both the words and the art offer many opportunities for discussion. The book concludes with a civil rights time line and an update on the aftermath of the lunch-counter struggle.—Barbara Elleman, Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art, Amherst, MA
[Page 148]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
A celebration of the momentous Woolworth's lunch counter sit-in when four college students staged a peaceful protest that became a defining moment in the struggle for racial equality and the growing Civil Rights Movement. - (Baker & Taylor)
A picture book celebration of the 50th anniversary of the momentous Woolworth's lunch counter sit-in, when four college students staged a peaceful protest that became a defining moment in the struggle for racial equality and the growing Civil Rights Movement. - (Baker & Taylor)
It was February 1, 1960.
They didn't need menus. Their order was simple.
A doughnut and coffee, with cream on the side.
This picture book is a celebration of the 50th anniversary of the momentous Woolworth's lunch counter sit-in, when four college students staged a peaceful protest that became a defining moment in the struggle for racial equality and the growing civil rights movement.
Andrea Davis Pinkney uses poetic, powerful prose to tell the story of these four young men, who followed Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s words of peaceful protest and dared to sit at the "whites only" Woolworth's lunch counter. Brian Pinkney embraces a new artistic style, creating expressive paintings filled with emotion that mirror the hope, strength, and determination that fueled the dreams of not only these four young men, but also countless others. - (Grand Central Pub)