This book caught my eye because of the fabulous illustrations by Kadir Nelson. It tells the story of Henry Brown, who, in 1849, at age 34, escaped from slavery by having himself mailed to Philadelphia in a box 3 feet long by 2 feet 8 inches deep by 2 feet wide, labeled as “dry goods.” (Henry enlisted the help of his choir-member friend, a free black who knew a white sympathizer. The sympathizer in turn contacted a white abolitionist of the Philadelphia Anti-Slavery Society for help on the other end.) Henry traveled 350 miles from Richmond, Virginia, in a nail-biting trip that took twenty-seven hours. Henry “Box” Brown became one of the most famous escaped slaves and his story remains incredibly inspirational.
Both the author and the illustrator have won many awards. This particular book won the Caldecott Honor in 2008. (The Randolph Caldecott Medal annually recognizes the preceding year’s “most distinguished American picture book for children.”)
Evaluation: Excellent in every respect.
Published by Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic, 2007
Note: Scholastic Press indicates the interest level for this book is Grade 3 – Grade 5. I would change that to Grade 3 and up (ad infinitum).