Our People

Vendor: Afrikan Djeli
Type: book - child

PreSchool-Grade 1-A young African-American child listens to her father tell stories about the achievements of “our people” in Africa and in the U.S., and then imagines herself doing those same things. The illustrations depict historical events and the girl’s parallel activities. First, readers see the pyramids, and the next spread shows the child building with her blocks. Subsequent pages show an African artist at work, the youngster’s drawing of her father, Harriet Tubman leading slaves to freedom, the girl pulling her dolls to freedom in a red wagon, African-American cowboys, and her riding on Daddy’s back. She goes to sleep dreaming of the great things she will do as an adult, such as exploring outer space. This is a tender book with a message of pride and family togetherness. Also highlighted are the possibilities seen by the protagonist, who believes, with her father’s support, that she can do anything. The affection and love between the two is clearly evident in the text and in Bryant’s sensitive paintings. The text is simple and repetitive, with a rhythmic cadence that will appeal to young audiences. The illustrations are large and bold, and the text is short and interesting enough for group story times.