A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
An educational yet warm glimpse into the life of renowned performer Nina Simone's life, whose unapologetic voice helped define the civil rights era and the Black Lives Matter movement.
Self-determination and fighting for what is right is always important. Despite what others may do or say, never stop trying to achieve your goals and dreams. Your voice is mighty and has power.
Positive Role Models
Nina, throughout all her stages of development, serves as a positive role model for readers. She never let anyone or anything keep her from her dream of being a groundbreaking performer. She also did not allow the harsh realities of racism stop her from speaking the truth and fighting for justice.
Illustrations feature both prominent and less known figures throughout Black history of different ages, genders, and colors. The importance of unity, determination, and respect for all people are the book's themes.
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Violence & Scariness
Subtle images and text describe Black Americans being fire bombed and unjustly arrested.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Nina: A Story of Nina Simone. It's the personal story of famed singer Nina Simone, born Eunice Waymon, written by debut author Traci N. Todd and illustrated by Caldecott and Newbery winner Christian Robinson, who won a 2022 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor for this book. The story gives readers a glimpse into the ups and downs of the life of the four time Grammy-nominated artist and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee. Born in a time when her voice and talents were silenced due to the color of her skin, Nina constantly persevered to stand up for what was right. With timeless songs that helped define the civil rights era, Nina: A Story of Nina Simone reveals how Nina was more than a singer or songwriter, she was a brave political activist.
Is It Any Good?
Debut author Traci N. Todd and award-winning illustrator, Christian Robinson shine a stunning light on an American treasure who crossed many barriers and whose voice has stood the test of time. Nina: A Story of Nina Simone is a memorable celebration of fierce woman who was inspired by the world around her instead of being defeated by it. The bold and inventive pictures, paired with melodic words, engage readers from the start. A musically themed call to action for racial justice and hope for a brighter tomorrow, the book will surely ring true for many generations to come.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.