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Martin Rising: Requiem For a King
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Martin Rising: Requiem For a King

4.32  ·  Rating details ·  234 ratings  ·  78 reviews
In a rich embroidery of visions, musical cadence, and deep emotion, Andrea and Brian Pinkney convey the final months of Martin Luther King's life -- and of his assassination -- through metaphor, spirituality, and multilayers of meaning.

Andrea's stunning poetic requiem, illustrated with Brian's lyrical and colorful artwork, brings a fresh perspective to Martin Luther King,
Hardcover, 128 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by Scholastic Press
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Laura Harrison
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is other worldly good. It is formatted like a picture book yet it is an uncustomary 128 pages. Mind blowingly stunning. I see new picture books on an almost daily basis. This is one of the spectacular ones that make me stop in tracks and say Wow! A true must-have, must-read for Everyone!
Beautiful tribute. Don’t miss the author’s and illustrator’s notes and additional back matter with more information about Dr. King’s life and legacy.
Feb 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Thank you @kidlitexchange for providing me with a copy of this book to read and review. All opinions are my own. #partner

I believe that some books come to us at the perfect moment. Martin Rising was one of those books for me. First, it felt serendipitous that February is Black History Month. Second, my third graders are writing their own poetry at the moment. This book was an excellent way of connecting those two bridges. Martin Rising is a book of poetry that documents the final days of Martin
Jordan Henrichs
Feb 25, 2018 rated it liked it
Went into this thinking it was something like a biography but found out rather quickly this text was going to focus almost solely on Martin's death and events leading up to his death, primarily, the Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike of 1968. The foreshadowing leading up to his death was eerie, especially Martin's pause during his speech the night before his assassination, as if he knew the end was coming.

The approach is similar to Loving Vs. Virginia by Patricia Hubry Powell. Unlike that work th
Katherine Wren
Jul 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In a word, this book is POWERFUL.

I can't wait to read it with my students on Marin Luther King Jr. Day this coming year.

This book focuses on the Memphis Sanitation Worker's Strike and Martin's involvement with that movement in the last couple of months of his life. This poetic requiem ties in the childhood nursery rhyme of Henny Penny playing the role of fate, questioning if Martin foresaw his end and what happens to a movement when the "sky falls".

Simply beautiful. The artwork and imagery of
Ms. Yingling
Dec 22, 2017 rated it liked it
ARC from Follett

This is a very lyrical, impressionistic overview of the end of King's life. It does cover his assassination, but in terms that would not be too upsetting to younger readers.

I'm not sure about this. It wouldn't be very useful for research projects, but would be fine for general reading. There are some helpful notes at the end. I think this lost me when Henny Penny narrated a bit. This, along with the plentiful illustrations, made me feel that it might be better for younger audien
Caitlin Hoffer
Jan 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wow, that is some POETRY. It doesn't have a reading level yet on ARBookFind, but I hope it's pretty high. There's some language devices in there that aren't your typical non-fiction poetry book fare.

I gave it four stars for now because I need to revisit the art and sit down and write a more thorough review later after giving it more time. There's that question of being a book with pictures vs. a picture book, but I think from my first readthrough, it might tell a story pretty well.
Brenda Kahn
I can imagine the beauty of the finished book because the arc is absolutely gorgeous. Yellow is an appropriate dominant color - the color of light and of strength. But blues also dominate and then there are those splashes of red. While one bathes in the gorgeous illustrations, the poetry requires a bit of attention. Ms Davis grabs it in the first poem, Henny Penny Prelude. What? Henny Penny? That was not expected! I do hope that I have the opportunity to hear the poet read these poems. Coming in ...more
This book of poetry explores Martin Luther King Jr's final days. It's a beautiful book. I love the illustrations so much.
Aug 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Some of the best verse I have seen in Children’s Literature. Invaluable back matter. Def going to share this book in 3420.
Shauna Yusko
WOW! First 5 ⭐ book of 2018 already! This is a MUST for all middle/high school classrooms and libraries. So many books to pair with this. Excellent resource for studying poetry, US history, Martin Luther King Jr, or looking to extend holiday celebration activities. The writing! The artwork! Simply incredible! ...more
Jan 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It was April 4, 1968. As a sixteen-year-old junior in high school my thoughts were turning to the end of the school year and a summer job at the local florist shop at the other end of the street. In another state a Noble Peace Prize winner was thinking of music and words when standing on the balcony of a motel in Memphis, Tennessee. It was early evening. An hour later, this man, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was gone, killed by an assassin's bullet. My memory of the news in our home is one of stu ...more
Dec 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
A beautiful book in both words and illustrations!
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read an ARC and it is not a traditional MLK biography- in a good way! The text is lyrical, the artwork is amazing, and the backmatter is thorough.
Truly epic. The words, the art, the sentiments, phenomenal. A spirited tribute and treasure.
While much has been written about the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and his involvement in the civil rights movement, much less has been written about the Memphis garbage workers' strike that brought him to the city where he died. And absolutely nothing comes as close to capturing that feeling of being right alongside the great man quite as effectively as these docu-poems that seem almost to have been written in the midst of the moments they are describing. Complemented by stunni ...more
Jo-ann Walsh
Jul 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing

@kidlitexchnage #partner
Thank you @kidlitexchange for the review copy of Martin Rising: Requiem For a King in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.
This is a beautiful book by Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney. It is written in all poem form with gorgeous illustrations that accompany the text. The focus of the book is on the few months that led up to Martin’s passing and a short time after. In 1968 in Memphis Tennessee, black sanitation workers were not getting equal pay or
Cindy Mitchell *Kiss the Book*
Cross-posted from Kiss the Book reviewer's personal Goodreads account

Martin Rising: Requiem for a King by Andrea and Brian Pinkney, 121 pages. Scholastic Press, 2018. $15.

Language: G; Mature Content: G; Violence: PG (mild description of riots and MLK's assassination)


This beautiful book of poems details the last months and days of Martin Luther King Jr’s life. It is divided into three sections called “Daylight,” “Darkness,” and “Dawn.” The first few poems are about t
Ben Truong
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Today marks the fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. (4 April), an American Baptist minister who was best known for being an activist – not just any activist, but one of the spokesperson and leader in the civil rights movement, and one of my many heroes. On this day, I thought it would be apropos to remember him by reading about him.

Martin Rising: Requiem For a King is a children picture book of poetry written by Andrea Davis Pinkney and illustrated by Brian Pinkn
Stephanie Bange
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney have given us a number of picture books about important events that occurred during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960's. They may have delivered their magnum opus with this requiem, covering the final months of Dr. Martin Luther King's life -- which occurred exactly 50 years ago this spring, making it incredibly timely.

A.Pinkney employs numerous literary devices in her free verse poems: foreboding, simile, metaphor, alliteration, and hindsight, among ot
Apr 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: bio-info
During this year honoring the fiftieth anniversary of the loss of Dr. Martin Luther King, one of the best books published (2018) for young & older readers is Martin Rising Requiem for a King. Author Andrea Davis Pinkney and her husband illustrator, Brian Pinkney, have created a poetic memory book about the final months of Dr. King's life. Placed against a retelling of the sanitation workers' strike in Memphis, Tennessee, the reader realizes the need for a leader, such as Dr. King, since he o ...more
This was a great book of history and chronology, biography, and poetry (verbal and visual) to read during the 2018 mid-term elections. The Pinkneys have combined their talents sublimely to pay tribute to MLK and the Civil Rights Movement and channel King’s hope going forward. The length and substance of the book make it a bit at odds with its children’s-literature format, but it is worth tracking down, reading out loud with young listeners and seasoned readers. One measure of the book’s strength ...more
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Carol  Vanhook
Martin Rising is a wonderful book about Martin Luther King. Andrea Davis Pinkney used "docu-poems" to discuss the final weeks in King's life. The book flows from bright times to dark & back to brightness. It leaves readers visualizing hope & a positive future. Brian Pinkney's illustrations accentuate the power of home, family, church, animals and weather. His use of bright & dark swirls of color accentuated a spiritual aspect rather than the sad details of King's death.
There's an ext
Abby Johnson
Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous. This gorgeous book explores the months leading up to Martin Luther King's assassination, including his involvement with the Memphis sanitation workers' strike and his last riveting speech in which he seemed to predict his own death. It also explores the continuing work of civil rights after his death. This is an MLK book unlike one you've read before and a must-have for your shelves this January. 2018 is the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King's assassination and ...more
In this collection of “docu-poems,” author Andrea Davis Pinkney presents the final months of Dr. King’s life. With a musicality of language and along with Brian Pinkney’s illuminating and spiritual paintings, each poem carries a different emotional tone and honors multiple facets of King’s life – his work, his family, and his ministry. This selection works on its own as a memorial of Dr. King’s life, but would also be a powerful read aloud in a classroom or theater setting, or as a part of a lar ...more
Absolutely stunning. My words cannot express the emotion this work evoked in me. The huge impact of the assassination of this peaceful leader was really brought home. I cried. I felt a loss for what might have been had he lived on to continue his way of nonviolent protest of the indignities and brutalities inflicted on the African American race.

Be sure to read the author and illustrator notes at the end. Beautiful tribute to a true American hero.
Jan 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This timely book of poetry about the life and lessons of Martin Luther King Jr is beautifully written and filled with gorgeous illustrations. Uplifting. Spiritual. Inspired. Using Henny Penny as narrator, mother figure, voice of premonition was ingenious. I feel blessed to have come across the ARC in my favorite bookstore. The target group for this book may be children, but any literate person fortunate enough to read the words and study the illustrations will be transformed.
LS Johnson
Apr 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is the best book I have read so far this year. Although I have read many storied accounts a MLK, thisnone was so unique. And how is it that prose and verse can convey such an incredible amount of information and emotion? I love it when a book can get et someone to read poetry and they don't realize it. The art is beautiful and adds another dimension, and additional details, to the story. This is a must read. As I have read other books this year, I'm constantly comparing it to this book.
Jul 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
*I received a free review copy of this book from the publisher through my district library services*

This story of King's final days was told in moving verse with lovely illustrations. I think some of the language might make it a tough read for younger readers. I'd probably recommend this for fifth grade and up. This is not a research book, more of a lovely poetry book that would be very helpful in connecting readers to King's life (and death).
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Andrea Davis Pinkney is the New York Times bestselling author of more than 20 books for children, including the Caldecott Honor Book and Coretta Scott King Honor Book Duke Ellington, illustrated by Brian Pinkney; Let it Shine: Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and winner of the Carter G. Woodson Award; and Alvin Ailey, a Parenting Publication Gold medal winne ...more