Revolution in Our Time: The Black Panther Party’s Promise to the People

Candlewick. Nov. 2021. 400p. Tr $24.99. ISBN 9781536214185.
Gr 7 Up–In this thorough, well-researched work, Magoon offers an in-depth look at the Black Panthers that we’ve not really seen for young people—one that is honest and offers a much-needed corrective. This more sympathetic portrait is broken down into clear, easy-to-follow sections that take place in chronological order. Members of the party, particularly the founders, are highlighted; these historical figures are fleshed out as complex individuals. The compelling narrative also covers the history of the entire organization. Magoon doesn’t shy away from presenting the troubles and challenges the party faced, including numerous arrests, and how despite their mission for racial equality, gender equality didn’t seem to be an issue they wanted to tackle. She brilliantly shares the positive, such as how they allowed their offices to be used for childcare and free meals, and how they set up survival programs to help people in need. The free breakfast program schools have today is thanks to the Black Panthers.
VERDICT A must-have for American history units that will spend more time in readers’ hands than on the shelves.

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