Saturday, September 7, 2013

Review: Profiles #6: Peace Warriors

Title: Profiles #6: Peace Warrriors
Author: Andrea Davis Pinkney
Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks
Pages: 144
Genre: Non-fiction
Review Copy: NetGalley
Release Date: July 30, 2013

Summary: Meet six heroic social activists.

The next book in our six-in-one, full-color bio series will focus on Peace Warriors. Featuring men and women who have worked passionately to pioneer peaceful solutions to violent conflicts throughout history. Our peace warriors will include Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu, Dorothy Day, and Ellen Sirleaf Johnson. Find out about their childhoods, where they went to school, what their families were like, and their major accomplishments. Six inspiring tales of courage and conviction. -- Cover image via IndieBound & summary via Goodreads.

My thoughts: It is nice to see a book focusing on people who are heroes based on something other than physical strength or celebrity. Readers quickly see that these are strong individuals who worked for change through influence. There were many commonalities with these six people as they made incredible change happen without violence.

These were some amazing heroes. I do wish that we saw a bit more of their foibles though. In a biography, I like to see that a person is definitely not perfect because then they seem more real. Also, when I can see their everyday issues, then their deeds seem more attainable for a common person. That said, it is still incredibly inspirational. It encourages that spirit of working for peace because readers will see how much one voice can do.

Though teachers are often looking for lengthier biographies for reports, I think this format, a collection of related biographies, would be a great mentortext for a similar project - one that could shake up the old and a little tired biography assignment of reading one 150+ page book about one person and writing a report. It might be nice to have students find people who have something distinct in common like this.

Pinkney's narrative is interesting and full of rich detail.  I especially appreciated learning about Dorothy Day and Ellen Sirleaf Johnson, two women I was unfamiliar with before reading this book. I will be happy to add Peace Warriors to our collection.

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