Monday, September 27, 2010
Promises to Keep: How Jackie Robinson Changed America by Sharon Robinson
Who better to write a biography on the iconic Jackie Robinson than his own daughter? Sharon Robinson, the baseball player's only daughter, fills this engaging book with a mix of historical facts and family anecdotes. Robinson uses timelines to outline the history of slavery and integration in baseball, and she discusses her father’s athletic achievements in the context of civil rights and the political climate of the day. Primary source materials are highlighted throughout the text, including letters written by Jackie Robinson, death notes sent to the Robinson family, newspaper pages and plenty of pictures, both from the media and from family albums. All of these documents are shown in photographs – readers will get chills looking at the note written in all caps, “WE HAVE ALREADY GOT RID OF SEVERAL LIKE YOU ONE WAS FOUND IN RIVER JUST RECENTLY” (p. 34). This book could easily be used as a resource to teach primary and secondary source documents, or in units on civil rights, biographies and oral histories.
Robinson, Sharon. Promises to Keep: How Jackie Robinson Changed America. New York: Scholastic, 2004.