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Author Spotlight: Ashley Bryan


Have you ever wondered what it’s like to be an award-winning artist? Words to My Life’s Song is an autobiography that gives a glimpse into the imaginings and memories of three-time Coretta Scott King Award winning illustrator, Ashley Bryan. Mr Bryan frames the book as an afternoon spent walking around his home on an island in Maine. As we wander, Mr. Bryan tells us about his life growing up in the Bronx, going to art school, being in the army, [2]teaching art, and discovering his passion for illustrating books. Along the way, we see a lot of his colorful paintings, stained glass and cut paper creations. This book is a bright, joyful celebration of life and creativity.

Recommended by: Hannah Wheeler – Lawrence

Mr. Bryan book, “Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives & Dreams Brought to Life [2]” was named a 2017 Newbery Medal Honor Book as well as being named a 2017 Coretta Scott King Award Honor Book for both his writing and illustrations.


Books written and/or illustrated by Ashely Bryan:

ashley-bryans-puppets [3]sail-away [4]LetShine [5]AfricanTales [6]Poetry [7]Thunder [8]>Ashley [9]Stable [10]Scare [11]


More about Black History:

To learn even more about fascinating and inspiring black history makers, visit the Center for Black Literature & Culture [25] at Central Library. The Center is dedicated to celebrating the vibrant and resilient heritage and triumphs of those born of African roots.


WeNeedDiverseBooks Logo [26]To get young people engaged, one of the things they need is to see themselves in books. It is important for all of us to see ourselves in books, because that encourages us to read in a different way and encourages us to write more.” ~ Dr. Jerrie Cobb Scott Founder of the African American Read-in #weneeddiversebooks [26]

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