Title: Ellen's Broom
Author: Kelly Starling Lyons
Illustrator: Daniel Minter
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's SonsISBN:978-0-399-25003-3
A family heritage is something we should all treasure and embrace. The good and bad of our past is what makes us strong as we move forward into the next generation. Kelly Starling has done an excellent job in showing young readers the importance of family in Ellen's Broom.
Ellen sat in church with her family on a day that meant more than all the others. They were free. Slavery days were over. For Ellen's family this meant that in the eyes of the law she and her family would never have to be separated. At home, her mother looks at the old broom above the hearth. It represented the only wedding slaves were allowed to have. A broom wedding was how Ellen's parents were married. During that time a couple would have their Deacon say a few words and then together they would jump over a broom. Now that they are free, Ellen's parents want to be married legal just like everybody else. Ellen has been put in charge of making sure the broom makes it to the court house, to once again bear witness to their union.
Parents and teachers can utilize this wonderful story to discuss the importance of family and heritage. This would be a great opportunity for children to bring in old photos to the classroom and share their stories. At home parents can open the family photo album to share the family history. Ellen's Broom will help remind us all that we should never take our freedom for granted.
Kelly Starling Lyons is a children’s book author whose mission is to transform moments, memories and history into stories of discovery. She is the author of CCBC Choices-honored picture book, One Million Men and Me (Just Us Books), and chapter book, NEATE: Eddie’s Ordeal (Just Us Books). My new picture book, Ellen's Broom, illustrated by Daniel Minter and published by G.P. Putnam's Sons, debuts this week!
Thursday, January 5, I kick off a 10-day virtual tour to celebrate its release. Please come along and enter to win some cool giveaways including the grand prize - a signed poster of the cover and a decorated wedding broom from Stuart's Creations, a wonderful company which made the broom my husband and I jumped. You can keep up with the tour on my FaceBook page and blog. Leave a comment on any of the tour stops to be entered in the giveaway.
Sunday, January 15 is the big Ellen's Broom launch party at Quail Ridge Books & Music, a wonderful indie bookstore. Music, cake, craft, reading and more. It's an event for the whole family. Details here.
January 5 – Simple Saturday
January 6 – The Brown Bookshelf
January 7 –Kristi’s Book Nook
January 8 – Inside the Books
January 9 – The 3 R’s – Reading, ‘Riting and Research
January 10 – Devas T. Rants and Raves
January 11 – Together AsOne
January 12 –Of Thoughts and Words
January 13 – The Pirate Tree
January 14 – Round up of the Tour here at Kuumba
January 15 – LAUNCH PARTY AT RALEIGH’S QUAIL RIDGE BOOKS & MUSIC. You can buy a copy of Ellen’s Broom and have it signed, enjoy aprogram, music provided by two singers from the MLK All-Children’s Choirand wedding cake courtesy of local baker extraordinaire Yummy to Your Tummy Desserts by Andrea. Stay tuned for photos .