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Malcolm X: A Fire Burning Brightly

by Walter Dean Myers
Illustrated by Leonard Jenkins

Published by HarperCollins, 2000
32 pages
ISBN: 0-06-027707-6

Ages 10-14

Already the author of a fine full-length biography of Malcolm X for older readers (Malcolm X: By Any Means Necessary, Scholastic,1993), Walter Dean Myers has now written a profile for younger readers. The African American leader's views initially challenged the racial unity and nonviolence embraced by many in the Civil Rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Amazingly, Myers doesn't sacrifice the complexity of his subject despite the brevity of the book. By carefully choosing the highlights and the turning points of Malcolm's life, Myers gives this short text great weight and substance. He uses quotes from Malcolm within the narrative and as enlarged focal points on many of the pages. A time line provides another overview of Malcolm's life and his evolving views, which resulted from the fact that he never stopped reading, learning, and thinking. Leonard Jenkins's dynamic art, with its widely varied perspectives, uses acrylic, pastels, and spray paint in layers on museum board. This book's sophisticated style will help ensure that older readers who want a shorter biography will not overlook it. CCBC categories: Biography and Autobiography; Historical People, Places, and Events.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center


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