Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Everyone Matters.

Last year, after I fell in love with Newbery Honor-Award winning THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE, I set about to read everything else by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley -- who, incidentally is my Tennessee neighbor! -- which led me to her marvelous book JEFFERSON'S SONS: A Founding Father's Secret Sons.

I love this book. It features the stories of Beverly, Harriet, Maddy, and Eston -- whose father was Thomas Jefferson and mother was Sally Hemings. It's rich, heartfelt historical fiction full of truth and beauty and honesty. And how wise is this Sally?! Love her. And lucky me, at NCTE, I got to meet Kim and tell her in person how much I enjoyed the book. (see pic below)

Here are a few favorite passages from the book.

"A lot of things are true," said Mama, "but that doesn't mean we say them out loud."

"You matter, "mama repeated. "not because of whose son you are. Because of who you are. You're as important as every other human being that ever was or ever will be. Everyone matters. What that girl thinks of you, how she treats you, can't change the fine person that you are."

Mama took Beverly's hands. "Listen. Neither part of you is better not the black part or the white part. They're both what you are. But right now the white people make the laws in this country. They make the rules. It's easier to live like a white person here."

And here's me and Kim. (Good news: Kim says we'll soon get a sequel to THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE! It's coming in October and is titled THE WAR I FINALLY WON.)


  1. Now that you've nudged me with those great quotes, I know I need to read Jefferson's Sons. I loved The War That Saved My Life. How wonderful to be able to look for a sequel! Thanks, Irene.

  2. I loved THE WAR THAT SAVED MY LIFE. It ended so perfectly, though...I'm almost afraid of a sequel. But I'm sure it will be fantastic! Lovely that you got to meet her:>)

  3. I didn't know there were other books by Kim. My students and I have loved The War that Saved my Life. I look forward to the sequel. Can't wait to tell them there will be one, but now I must order Jefferson's Sons. Thanks!

  4. Excited to hear there will be a sequel to one of my favorite books. And it will be out in time to make our Mock Newbery list. (Do sequels qualify for Newbery awards?) Always delightful to meet a favorite author!


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