-- a review of the book by Anne Broyles
I came across this book while doing a little internet browsing on the "Trail of Tears." I checked it out of the library because the cover was so pretty, it seemed to be on my children's reading level, and it was a true storybook.
It doesn't seem to have won any major illustration or writing awards, and I'm not sure why. The pictures are just captivating. This little girl is drawn so beautifully. Priscilla is drawn with distinctly African slave features, even down to the rag on her head, but without looking like a caricature picture. The flowers through the book were cheerful and symbolic.
I think you'll love this book.
Even if you're all grown up, do check this one out sometime. She's born a slave and her "master" sold her mother. She was mistreated, but later bought by a Cherokee family and taken on the Trail of Tears. She comes across a white man she had met earlier when he had visited her "master." This man paid a large sum of money ($1,000 in gold!) to buy her freedom.
What's more, he ADOPTED her and loved her as his other children. I was very touched by this idea that her biological mother was still alive and probably wondering what happened to her baby. But that at the same time, through all her hard times, Priscilla understood that her mother would have wanted her to be happy and she embraced her new family. And grew flowers from the seeds of those her mother left.
Check out this book! I think I'll be reading it several times before I return it.