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★★★★ FOUR STARRED REVIEWS! New from the award-winning author/illustrator team behind Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop! Who was Coretta Scott King? Her black-veiled image at the funeral of her husband, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was moving and iconic. This book introduces readers to the woman behind the veil—a girl full of spunk and pluck, bravery and grit.
“Corrie, you are a brave soldier. I don’t know what I would do without you.” —Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Much more than just a wife, Coretta Scott King was Martin’s partner in the fight for justice. It wasn’t always easy. From an early age, she stood strong against white violence toward her family in the South, and against discrimination as a music student in the North. Coretta found her voice as a classical singer, but she struggled mightily to speak out as an activist in the face of men who thought she should be seen and not heard. But she never wavered. When Martin died, it was Coretta who carried on the struggle, and preserved his legacy so that his voice would be heard by future generations. This important story, told in poetry and prose, is a riveting introduction to an important and instrumental figure in the history of activism and civil rights.
Awards for Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop… Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Book • School Library Journal Best Book of the Year • Booklist Editors' Choice • Kirkus Reviews Best Children's Book • Booklist Top 10 Diverse Books for Middle Grade or Older Readers • Chicago Public Library Best of the Best Books
About the Author
Alice Faye Duncan is the author of multiple children’s books, including Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop, which received a 2019 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor and five starred reviews, and Just Like Mama, which was nominated for the NAACP Image Award. Her most recent books include Opal Lee and What it Means to Be Free, Evicted!, and Yellow Dog Blues.
R. Gregory Christie is a recipient of the Caldecott Honor, a winner of the NAACP Image award, and a six-time Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award honoree. His recent Calkins Creek books include Answering the Cry for Freedom by Gretchen Woelfle, which won the Carter G. Woodson Book Award, and Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop by Alice Faye Duncan, which received six starred reviews. He also designed the art on the US Postal Service’s 2013 Kwanzaa stamp.
2023 Eureka! Nonfiction Childrens’ Honor Award
★ "Duncan depicts Coretta’s path through both verse and prose; the many poetic forms she employs reflect the complexities of her subject’s life, and the strong prose gives a clear picture of her determined personality. Christie’s impressionistic mixed-media watercolor illustrations are stunning, beginning with the powerful cover that immediately commands attention. Exuding emotion, each image perfectly complements the intriguing text." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
★ "Coretta Scott King gets her due recognition in this comprehensive, creative, and radiant picture book biography...Alternating between spreads of poetry and prose, the clever structure balances the delivery of both emotion and information, and the poems themselves vary significantly in form, deftly matching the tone of Coretta’s experiences at each age. Unexpected allure is added by the recurring celestial imagery related to both Coretta and Martin, which Duncan explains is based on the couple’s belief that their marriage was 'divinely appointed—beyond earthly perimeters.' Christie’s mixed media watercolor art uses a vibrant, warm color palette and is stunningly emotive in depicting the details of a storied lifetime." —The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, starred review
★ "In a sophisticated, poetic biography in picture-book form, Duncan alternates double-page spreads featuring prose or poems in a variety of forms that highlight Coretta Scott King's accomplishments...Duncan's reverent tone gleams thanks to an effective combination of forthright prose and eclectic poetic forms. Christie conveys the highlights of Coretta's life story in vivid and engaging watercolor renderings." —The Horn Book, starred review
★ "A marvelous tribute to the activist, singer, and wife of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Duncan crafts a captivating look at the life and legacy of Coretta Scott King...Duncan’s narrative emphasizes King’s strength and bravery, and how she inspired her husband to make difficult choices for the cause. The text’s musicality recall’s King’s vocalist background...Gorgeous text and resplendent illustrations present a nuanced picture book biography for all shelves." —School Library Journal, starred review
"Duncan's picture-book biography emphasizes the personal strengths and virtues that make CSK a civil rights icon in her own right, in addition to being MLK's life partner. Duncan uses a variety of poetic styles, ranging from acrostics and haiku to free verse, that walk readers chronologically through key moments in CSK’s life, while the prose passages generally provide wider historical context. Christie's mixed-media, watercolor illustrations appear on every spread, depicting cited events and individuals, conveying the emotions of those involved, and providing important setting details." —Booklist
"Blending poetry and prose to chart the path of Coretta Scott King (1927–2006), Duncan and Christie portray a person who was formidable from her earliest years." —Publishers Weekly
"Coretta's Journey should be read by any young person who wants to understand Coretta Scott King's essential contribution to her husband's extraordinary life and enduring legacy. Her courage and dedication were evident both before and after she met Martin. She chose to be a wife and mother but was always Coretta."—Dr. Clayborne Carson, historian and founding director of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford University
“Coretta’s Journey is complete with compelling prose and vivid illustrations. Alice Faye Duncan seamlessly weaves historical facts together to show that by some universal, divine source, Coretta’s marriage to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. allowed them both to actualize their life callings to advance civil and human rights.” —Daphene R. McFerren, executive director of the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change at the University of Memphis