Separate But Not Equal
By Jim Haskins
With February being designated as African-American History month and the theme of this year’s observation declared the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Civil Rights Act, an appropriate book to read is Separate But Not Equal. This non-fiction book focuses on the policy of separate but equal—segregation and supposedly the same quality of facilities—especially as it pertains to education. The book chronicles the struggle for African-Americans to attain education from colonial times through the late 20th century. This book highlights important court cases and instrumental people in changing the quality of education for African-Americans. This is a great non-fiction book which gives basic information in language that is easily understood. Separate But Not Equal stresses the importance of education as a means to achieve better quality of life. It is sad to think that for so many years quality of life was denied to so many.
The Lost Dogs
by Jim Gorant
The Lost Dogs is a nonfiction book which chronicles the case of NFL player Michael Vick’s illegal dog fighting operation and the fate of the dogs involved. The book presents the evidence used against Vick leading to his prison sentence. However, a majority of the book focuses on the dogs, how they were abused and how they were rescued. At the time of the raid on Vick’s Bad Newz Kennels, 47 dogs survived. Individuals and organizations concerned with the welfare of the surviving dogs, banded together to save and rehabilitate these dogs which some viewed as being vicious fighter dogs.
If you are an animal lover parts of this book are difficult to read. However, keeping in mind that the majority of the dogs were rescued and rehabilitated makes it a worthwhile read.
I love working in the middle school library because each day I get to work with wonderful students. In addition, I have access to lots of interesting books. It is always fun to help students connect to books they like, and to talk about what they are reading.