Reading/Interest Level: Primary
Author: Nikki Grimes
Illustrator: Michele Wood
Publisher: Orchard Books
Chasing Freedom recounts the life stories of Harriet Tubman and Susan B. Anthony through a fictional conversation between the two women. Susan B. Anthony is hosting a women's rights meeting, with Harriet Tubman as the keynote speaker. Harriet comes early to catch up with her old friend, and the two recount stories of years gone by before the meeting starts. The author creates an engaging atmosphere for late elementary school-aged children to imagine the lives, struggles, and triumphs of these champions of equal rights.
Chasing Freedom serves as the perfect introduction to historical fiction. Written in story book format, with breathtaking illustrations, Grimes captivates her audience and triggers a desire to learn more not only about Tubman and Anthony, but other key players in the civil rights movement, as well as the women's rights movement. It's one thing to read facts about historical events and persons, but it is an entirely different experience to sit down with Harriet Tubman and Susan B. Anthony. Readers will likely continue on to historical fiction novels, book reports, and research projects to satisfy the curiosity Chasing Freedom ignites.