Parents' Guide to

Double Bass Blues

By Mandie Caroll, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 4+

Gorgeous story of a boy's excellence and the power of music.

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This powerful book beautifully honors determination, making music, and Black boyhood. Nic's journey in Double Bass Blues is thrilling to watch unfold. As he walks, buses, and walks again to get into the city, Nic gracefully shrugs off bullies, keeps the sounds of the rain and windshield wipers in his head, and walks up stairway after stairway with that heavy bass. His arrival in the arms of his granddaddy is a long sigh of relief, and the realization that Nic is not the first musician in his bloodline to a refuge built of family, music and love.

With only about 30 words and 13 lines of dialogue, Rudy Gutierrez's stunning art does a lot of the story's heavy lifting. His swooping curved lines and sharp jagged edges evoke the different moods of Nic's journey. And the way Nic's face and hair coloring changes slightly from spread to spread captures the beauty of Blackness. This book is bursting with music, dedication, the importance of family, and Black excellence. Young readers will be able to connect on one or more levels, but this wonderful boy with his beloved bass is bound to steal the hearts of all. Don't miss this book; it's a keeper.

Book Details

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