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Shades of Black: A Celebration of Our Children [Hardcover]

By Sandra L. Pinkney (Author) & Myles C. Pinkney (Illustrator)
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Item Number 157444  
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Item description for Shades of Black: A Celebration of Our Children by Sandra L. Pinkney & Myles C. Pinkney...

Photographs and poetic text celebrate the beauty and diversity of African American children.

Publishers Description
Vibrant photographs by Myles Pinkney perfectly illustrate the extraordinary beauty of African-American boys and girls, while Sandra Pinkney's poetic text evokes a strong sense of pride. Together, this husband-and-wife team create a wonderful platform to explore and embrace the variety among African-Americans.

Citations And Professional Reviews
Shades of Black: A Celebration of Our Children by Sandra L. Pinkney & Myles C. Pinkney has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/2010 page 1474
  • Publishers Weekly - 11/20/2000 page 70
  • Kirkus Review - Children - 12/01/2000 page 1687
  • Booklist - 11/01/2000 page 548
  • School Library Journal - 12/01/2000 page 135
  • Hornbook Guide to Children - 07/01/2000 page 21
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/2002 page 88
  • Hornbook Guide to Children - 01/01/2001 page 21
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/2006 page 974

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Scholastic Inc.
Pages   40
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.25" Width: 10.5" Height: 8"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Nov 1, 2000
Publisher   Scholastic Inc
Age  4-8
ISBN  0439148928  
ISBN13  9780439148924  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Special Features > Substores > jp-unknown1
2Books > Subjects > Children > Baby-3 > General
3Books > Subjects > Children > People & Places > Biographies > People of Color
4Books > Subjects > Children > Baby-3
5Books > Subjects > Children > Literature

Reviews - What do customers think about Shades Of Black?

Brings out a lot  Apr 1, 2008
My only problem with this book is some children look like they got the 1 drop rule in them, they don't even look biracial. It needs more dark skin Black children in the book. Otherwise I LOVE the book.
I read this to my students (in a class of 24, 22 of them are Black) and came to realise many are uncomfortable about being Black, and they read this book on their own.
White reader loves "Shades of Black"  Feb 8, 2008
Some reviewers who parent biracial children were bothered that this book seemed to promote the "one-drop rule" of racial identity. Don't forget that Black is not a racial designator in this book - it only is if you choose to use it that way. You can use it in your family as a reminder of racial pride, but it can be used in other ways - as a librarian reading to a mixed race group, I bring up the point that THE COLOR BLACK CONTAINS ALL THE COLORS - and therefore WE ARE ALL A PART OF BLACK - all of us (including lily-white folks like me!) are a hue and shade of brown and black. I am also a parent of a biracial child, and it is up to him to choose to identify himself as "ginger" or "honey" or "peanut butter" or "Black." Little children understand crayons and paint (and food) much better than racial identity - light-skinned children may protest, "I'm not black, I'm white" - not because they have racial self-hatred, but because their skin looks physically closer to white. This book will help young children identify proudly as Black if their families do - but on a young child's level, it will now make sense.
great for teaching self love  Jan 3, 2008
Our family resides in an area where African Americans are in the minority of the population. When my children were in pre-school and were 'the only ones'in the class, we made a point of ensuring that we supplied them with as many opportunities for positive self-image as we could. This book does an excellent job of introducing the many variations of hues that are found among us. Yet it is the descriptions of each child that makes this book priceless. To describe each and every person as so uniquely beautiful is a skillful achievement.

We have since bought this book many times over for other friends, including non-Black friends, so they can also appreciate the many colors of us.

The problem is that not many bookstores carry the book. I've actually found it in paperback in discount stores. So, when I do find it, I have to buy several at a time.

Great idea, wrapped in controversial phrasing  Sep 18, 2007
The pictures are great.
The diversity of kids' skin tones is great.
The idea of celebrating kids is great.
On those three points, I think, all readers would agree.

What is ultimately the downfall or the glory of this book, depending on your view, is the chorus of "I am black. I am unique."

If you believe in the "one drop rule," or if you think anyone who doesn't believe in this is foolish/naive/in denial, then you would likely find the mood of this book to be celebratory.

If you believe that someone can be black *and* something else, then you will likely find this book offensive. Perhaps check out Pinkney's other book, "A Rainbow All Around Me."
Mommy Melissa  Aug 24, 2007
I bought this book for my two little girls because we had borrowed it from the library and they loved it. It has taught them that even though they are mixed and very light be to proud of everything that makes them who they are. I love that this book celebrates all the differences. It's also very cool how the picture are real children, not just cartoons. Now 2 and 3 1/2 my girls are proud to be unique and still love to read this book daily!! I would recommend this book 100%

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