Discovering Black America Available at Bookstores on September 1

Author, journalist and blogger Linda Tarrant-Reid has written a book for middle school readers and up on the history of African Americans.  Published by Abrams Books, Discovering is not just for kids, but for anyone interested in the journey and personal stories of the Africans and African Americans who built America.  Discovering is available at bookstores and at online booksellers including,  www.  For more information on Discovering visit:

About the book:

Discovering Black America by Linda Tarrant-Reid offers readers an unprecedented account of more than 400 years of African American history set against a background of American and global events. The book begins with a black sailor aboard the Niña with Christopher Columbus and continues through the colonial period, slavery, the Civil War, Jim Crow, and civil rights to our current president in the White House. Including first-person narratives from diaries and journals, interviews, and archival images, Discovering Black America will give readers an intimate understanding of this extensive history. The book includes an index and bibliography.

Kirkus Reviews – Starred Review


(reviewed on August 15, 2012)


This handsome, engaging study of African-American history brings to light many intriguing and tragically underreported stories.

This is a comprehensive approach to African-American history, beginning with accounts of black explorers before the settlement of North America. The straightforward narrative includes major historical events but places emphasis on unusual aspects. For example, during the segment on the American Revolution, there is good discussion about those who fought for both the Patriots and the Loyalists. Another section of distinction is the period following the Civil War and Reconstruction, including blacks in the West and an intriguing look at the differing views of Booker T. Washington and W.E.B. DuBois. The societal changes brought on by World War II and the civil rights movement receive their due. Little-known exchanges between Malcolm X and Martin Luther King are the kinds of detail that lift this narrative above the standard history text. Not surprisingly, the story concludes with the election of President Barack Obama and the challenges facing the first black president. This is a well-researched, readable overview with an attractive layout that will engage young readers. There are few pages that are not accompanied by an interesting sidebar or image, many archival.

From attractive page design to an afterword that encourages readers to search for their own history, there has been much attention to detail in this handsome volume. (notes, bibliography, art credits, index) (Nonfiction. 10 & up)

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-8109-7098-4
Page count: 244pp
Publisher: Abrams
Review Posted Online: Aug. 1st, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15th, 2012

From Booklist Online:

Discovering Black America: From the Age of Exploration to the Twenty-first Century.
Tarrant-Reid, Linda (author).
Sept. 2012. 244p. illus. Abrams, hardcover, $29.95 (9780810970984). Grades 7-12. 973.
REVIEW. First published September 1, 2012 (Booklist).

This handsome historical overview begins with the first African explorers and seamen arriving in the New World in the fifteenth century, and it ends with the presidential election of Barack Obama. In between, focused chapters discuss black history in detail, from slavery and the Underground Railroad to how African Americans have advanced through the decades to today. Despite the wide time span covered in this single volume, there is no slick simplification of facts, although there could be more about the daily struggle of ordinary people now. Many teens will be familiar with some of the coverage, such as the discussions of Jim Crow and the Harlem Renaissance, as well as biographies of famous leaders, from Frederick Douglass to Langston Hughes, Rosa Parks, Jacob Lawrence, Angela Davis, and Oprah. The spacious book design will draw readers with plentiful, well-placed paintings, photos, and documents on every spread. The extensive back matter includes meticulous footnotes and a bibliography of recommended books and websites for all those who will be moved to find out more. An excellent title for classroom support.

— Hazel Rochman

This entry was posted in African American History and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s