Cover image for Child of the dream : a memoir of 1963
Title:
Child of the dream : a memoir of 1963
ISBN:
9781338282801
Edition:
1st ed.
Physical Description:
227 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates, 6 unnumbered pages : illustrations ; 22 cm.
Summary:
In January of 1963, Sharon Robinson turned thirteen the night before George Wallace declared on national television 'segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever' in his inauguration for governor of Alabama. That was the start of a year that would become one of the most pivotal years in the history of America. As the daughter of Jackie Robinson, Sharon had incredible access to some of the most important events of the era, including her family hosting several fundraisers for Martin Luther King Jr. at their home in Connecticut, other Civil Rights heroes of the day calling Jackie Robinson for advice and support, and even attending the March on Washington for Freedom and Jobs. But Sharon was also dealing with her own personal problems like going through puberty, being one of the only black children in her wealthy Connecticut neighborhood, and figuring out her own role in the fight for equality. This memoir follows Sharon as she goes through that incredible year of her life. --
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Summary

Summary

An incredible memoir from Sharon Robinson about one of the most important years of the civil rights movement.

In January 1963, Sharon Robinson turns thirteen the night before George Wallace declares on national television "segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever" in his inauguration speech as governor of Alabama. It is the beginning of a year that will change the course of American history.

As the daughter of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, Sharon has opportunities that most people would never dream of experiencing. Her family hosts multiple fund-raisers at their home in Connecticut for the work that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is doing. Sharon sees her first concert after going backstage at the Apollo Theater. And her whole family attends the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.

But things don't always feel easy for Sharon. She is one of the only Black children in her wealthy Connecticut neighborhood. Her older brother, Jackie Robinson Jr., is having a hard time trying to live up to his father's famous name, causing some rifts in the family. And Sharon feels isolated-struggling to find her role in the civil rights movement that is taking place across the country.

This is the story of how one girl finds her voice in the fight for justice and equality.


Author Notes

Sharon Robinson, daughter of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, is the author of several works of fiction and nonfiction. She has also written several widely praised nonfiction books about her father, including Jackie's Nine , Jackie Robinson's Values to Live By , and Promises to Keep: How Jackie Robinson Changed America .


Reviews 4

School Library Journal Review

Gr 3--7--As the daughter of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, the author lived in a wealthy Connecticut neighborhood, attended an all-white school (with only two exceptions), and even owned a horse. Her family consisted of her parents and two brothers, Jackie Jr., a troubled youth, and younger brother David. While blessed in some ways, Robinson still faced subtle ignorance about her race from her peers. However, a television program featuring black people protesting in Birmingham, AL, and the "Segregation now, Segregation forever" battle cry from George Wallace opened Robinson's eyes to life beyond her neighborhood. Readers are introduced to this time period and its implications for the segregated South. At times almost exhaustive, the detailed descriptions of segregation laws and events such as the Little Rock Nine, Brown v. Board of Education, and church bombings do, however, serve a purpose. The honest explanation of the civil rights movement mirrors the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his followers. Robinson shows the events that led up to the March on Washington; she recounts her advocacy in action through fundraising, creating awareness, and marching with those seeking to make a difference in the world, as well as meeting King. Her excitement is palpable; her experiences are unforgettable. Sixteen pages of family photos enhance the memoir. VERDICT A depiction of the civil rights movement that exudes honesty and composure from a remarkable voice who tells her story with grace and pride. Readers will be moved and inspired.--Carol Connor, Cincinnati Public Schools


Publisher's Weekly Review

In this coming-of-age memoir, Robinson (The Hero Two Doors Down), daughter of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, focuses on the year 1963, when she was 13, illuminating how political activism on the national stage intertwined with her growing awareness of the civil rights movement. Robinson lives a privileged life in Stamford, Conn., with a large house and her own horse. Yet as one of two black students in her class, she feels a disconnect between her family's focus on the church bombings, nonviolent protests, and imprisonment of marchers taking place in Birmingham, Ala., and her schoolmates' lack of awareness about current events. She also worries about her brother, who struggles with the pressure of being his famous father's namesake, and she enjoys new experiences attending all-black social events, such as a Jack and Jill club designed to nurture future African-American leaders. Observing her father's commitment to furthering the cause of justice, watching the Children's March in Birmingham, and hearing Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech inspire Robinson to embrace political activism and honor her family's legacy. Robinson's unique viewpoint, accompanied by illuminating photographs from this charged historical period, offers plenty to hold readers' attention. Ages 8--12. (Sept.)■


Kirkus Review

"Sharon, I cannot promise you that the passage of any law will eliminate hate. But the laws will give Negroes full citizenship and bring us closer to equality."Legendary baseball player Jackie Robinsonmost famously known for breaking baseball's racial barrier when he played with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947gave this nuanced benediction to his only daughter, 13-year-old Sharon, as the family heard the disheartening news of the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. What the memoirist also beautifully and accessibly conveys is how her parents succeededand, by their admission, sometimes failedin rooting her and her two brothers, 10-year-old David and 16-year-old Jackie Jr., in the realities of pater Robinson's renown, Connecticut's 1960s-style racial microaggressions, and the seismic social and political shifts augured by the emerging civil rights movement. Thanks to the author's deft and down-to-earth style, readers understand how the personal and political converge: When her brother runs away from home in order to get away from his father's shadow, she muses on the social pressures of a school dance in the midst of midcentury U.S. racism; it is at a jazz fundraiser her parents coordinate for the Southern Christian Leadership conference that she finally meets Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. A lovingly honest memoir of a racialand social activistpast that really hasn't passed. (Memoir. 8-14) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Booklist Review

Honoring her father Jackie's legacy has been the focus of much of Robinson's work; Jackie's Nine (2001) and Promises to Keep (2004) both highlighted his barrier-breaking baseball career. Her latest, however, is a memoir focused on her own point of view during a pivotal year of the civil rights era a year in which Sharon coincidentally became a teenager. At the Robinson family's Connecticut home, the ballplayer's three children are protected from the worst aspects of racism and segregation in America. Nevertheless, Sharon often feels different as one of the few black girls in her neighborhood. When violence erupts in Alabama during the children's march, she is moved to act, participating in her parents' efforts to raise funds for Martin Luther King Jr. all the while taking care of her horse, experiencing crushes, and attending summer camp. Robinson takes a novelistic approach to her story, firmly rooting it in a young person's perspective. An inspiring tale of personal struggle, this should engage readers who enjoy history and learning about social progress.--Karen Cruze Copyright 2019 Booklist