Cover image for Promises to keep : Jackie Robinson's commitment to America
Promises to keep : Jackie Robinson's commitment to America
Publication Information:
New York : Scholastic, c2004.
Physical Description:
64 p. : col. ill. ; 28 cm.
Reading Level:
1030 L Lexile
Personal Subject:
A biography of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, the first African American to play in the major leagues, as told by his daughter.


Material Type
Call Number
Item Available
Book J 921 ROBINSON 1 1
Book J 921 ROBINSON 0 1
Book J 921 ROBINSON 0 1

On Order



A warm, intimate portrait of Jackie Robinson, America's sports icon, told from the unique perspective of a unique insider: his only daughter.

Sharon Robinson shares memories of her famous father in this warm loving biography of the man who broke the color barrier in baseball. Jackie Robinson was an outstanding athlete, a devoted family man and a dedicated civil rights activist. The author explores the fascinating circumstances surrounding Jackie Robinson's breakthrough. She also tells the off-the-field story of Robinson's hard-won victories and the inspiring effect he had on his family, his community. . . his country! Includes never-before-published letters by Jackie Robinson, as well as photos from the Robinson family archives.

Author Notes

Sharon Robinson is Jackie Robinson's daughter and the Vice President of Educational Programming for Major League Baseball. Ms. Robinson is also the creator of Breaking Barriers, an in-school program of Major League Baseball, the Major League Baseball Players Association, and Scholastic. Prior to joining Major League Baseball, she had a twenty-year career as a nurse-midwife and an educator. She has taught at Yale, Columbia, Howard, and Georgetown universities. She has also served as director of the PUSH for Excellence Program and as a fundraiser for The United Negro College Fund and A Better Chance. Ms. Robinson lives in St. Croix

Reviews 5

Publisher's Weekly Review

In this photo biography, Robinson (Jackie's Nine: Jackie Robinson's Values to Live By) offers an affectionate profile of her father who, she writes, "taught me to flip pancakes, hit a baseball, question political leaders, solve problems, and keep promises." The author's concise history of race relations in the United States enables youngsters to understand the underpinnings of the "segregated world" into which Robinson was born and the racism and injustices he encountered throughout his private and professional life. Especially intriguing is the author's incisive explanation of why her father was selected in 1947 as the individual to "pioneer the integration of Major League Baseball"; her discussion provides insight into the man's abilities and determination on and off the field. The volume's abundance of family photographs and reproductions of Robinson's letters to his wife and children amplify the highly personal nature of the narrative. The author notes that her parents encouraged her and her brothers to "measure our lives by the impact we had on other people's lives." Here she clearly, often eloquently, gauges the enormous impact Jackie Robinson had on so many lives as father, husband, athlete and crusader for justice and equality. Ages 9-12. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Horn Book Review

Jackie Robinson+s daughter draws an intimate portrait of her father as child, young man, athlete, businessman, civil rights leader, and national hero. Generously illustrated with photographs and letters, Robinson+s compelling text unveils the story of America+s long struggle with segregation and discrimination, centering on her father+s critical role in advancing the rights of blacks through his life and work. Ind. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

Gr. 3-7. There are numerous biographies about Robinson available for young people, but none have this book's advantage of family intimacy. In a personal account, Robinson's daughter, Sharon, describes her father's youth, his rise to become major-league baseball's first African American player, and his involvement in the civil rights movement. Sharon Robinson is an education executive for major-league baseball, and she writes about the sport and her father's life with the same immediate familiarity. It's her seamless blend of history and family story, though, that distinguishes this title. Through particular events in her father's life, the author makes the realities of a segregated society immediate: when her father first showed up for the Brooklyn Dodgers' spring training, for example, he was housed and fed separately from his white teammates. She also includes photographs of racially motivated death threats sent to the Robinson home. Robinson's emphasis on her parents' strong values reiterates some of the material in her previous title for youth, ackie's Nine (2001), but her private view of her father's accomplishments, placed within the context of American sports and social history, makes for absorbing reading. An excellent selection of family and team photographs and other materials, including her parents' love letters in their own handwriting, illustrate this fine tribute. --Gillian Engberg Copyright 2004 Booklist

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-7 -In captivating words and pictures, Robinson chronicles the life of her legendary father. She weaves historical events into the story of one of baseball's greatest players, revealing how they shaped his life. Her text, combined with numerous black-and-white archival and family photographs, reproductions of newspaper headlines, magazine pages, and letters, illustrates Jackie Robinson's journey from childhood to the moment that he integrated major league baseball to his life as a businessman and civil rights spokesperson. In addition to personal details, this intimate biographical sketch and authentic glimpse into the life of a great African American provides information on the post-Civil War world, race relations, and the struggle for civil rights. It will inspire readers and enhance character-education units. Pair this first purchase with the author's Jackie's Nine: Jackie Robinson's Values to Live By (Scholastic, 2001).-Tracy Bell, Durham Public Schools, NC (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

Jackie Robinson's daughter tells the story of her father's life and accomplishments, paying particular attention to the profound effect he had on American culture. Robinson writes in a straightforward style that is accessible to young readers without being condescending. Of course, she stresses all the positive aspects of her father's character, but this is not meant to be a completely objective account. Instead, the reader finds an insider's view of Robinson as husband, father, and friend, as well as athlete, pioneer, and civil-rights activist. Many of these activities have been ignored, or glossed over, by other biographers of works for children. Illustrated with copious photographs and letters from the family's private collection, this is a unique perspective on a man whose story has become so much the stuff of legend that the real person is often obscured. An excellent and much-needed addition to the Jackie Robinson story. (Biography. 9-12) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 6
A Black and White Worldp. 8
Signs of Hopep. 10
A Determined Pairp. 18
1945: A Changing Worldp. 22
Why My Father?p. 28
Play Ball!p. 30
A Civil Rights Championp. 50
Jackie Robinson's Legacyp. 58
Indexp. 64