The Rock and the River by Kekla Magoon - When I saw this book deals in part with the Black Panthers I knew I had to read it. It's set in Chicago 1968. 13 yr old Sam Childs is the son of a very well known civil rights activist and lawyer, Ronland Childs who has worked side by side with Dr. King. Mr. Childs has always taught his sons peaceful protest will lead to change. Sam has grown up believing in his fathers choice for change. Sam's older brother Stick joins the Black Panther movement. Now Sam must decide which is the right path for him. The decision becomes harder when Sam is a witness to the brutal beating of a friend by cops. Sam made me want to keep reading. Though there's a lot going on around him, Sam still dreams of becoming an architect and tries to work up the courage to talk to a girl. The author does a great job of imparting facts about the Black Panthers including their ten point platform, without it seeming forced. One of my favorite parts is when Sam and his mother can't go outside because reporters have the house surrounded. Stick comes by with other Black Panthers who act as security detail. To me that moment shows the Black Panthers weren't about violence rather strength. The Rock and the River will introduce many young readers to the Black Panthers, a very important part of American history. In the author notes, Magoon gives information about the civil rights movement and the Black Panther Party. I think the books appropriate for ages 10up. The Rock and the River will make an excellent addition to any library.
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I met Bucky's gaze and he knew. He saw me standing there, saw that I wasn't coming to his rescue, that he had been betrayed. I held his gaze, which was all I could manage to do. I read each moment, each thought that passed through him. I knew the moment he gave up hope.