R-E-S-P-E-C-T Aretha Franklin, the queen of soul

Carole Boston Weatherford, 1956-

Book - 2020

"Aretha Franklin was born to sing. The daughter of a pastor and a gospel singer, her musical talent was clear from her earliest days in her father's Detroit church. Aretha sang with a soaring voice that spanned more than three octaves. Her incredible talent and string of hit songs earned her the title "the Queen of Soul." This Queen was a multi-Grammy winner and the first female inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And there was even more to Aretha than being a singer,... songwriter, and pianist: she was an activist, too. Her song "Respect" was an anthem for people fighting for civil rights and women's rights. With words that sing and art that shines, this vibrant portrait of Aretha Franklin pays her the R-E-S-P-E-C-T this Queen of Soul deserves"--

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Subjects
Genres
Biographies
Picture books
Published
New York : Atheneum Books for Young Readers 2020.
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 x 29 cm
Audience
Ages 4 - 8
Grades K-1
Bibliography
Includes bibliographical references.
ISBN
9781534452282
1534452281
Main Author
Carole Boston Weatherford, 1956- (author)
Other Authors
Frank Morrison, 1971- (illustrator)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* The award-winning author-illustrator team of Weatherford and Morrison (The Roots of Rap, 2019) have taken on the life story of the Queen of Soul, and the result is a beautiful work of art. Weatherford employs a minimal, lyrical text of rhyming couplets that is evocative of "Respect," Franklin's signature hit, with spelled-out words like "B-L-E-S-S-E-D" and "G-R-O-O-V-E" heading every spread. Morrison's soulful oil paintings are expressive of the spirituality that enveloped the singer's youth, centered around church. They also convey the turmoil of periods like the civil rights movement, in which Franklin played a part. Her childhood wasn't easy. She moved from Memphis to Detroit, and her mother left the family after her father, a preacher and activist, was unfaithful. But Franklin's powerful voice catapulted her to record deals in her teens and then to chart-topping hits. She became a fixture in the most significant events of her time, with concerts gracing marches for racial equality in the 1960s and Barack Obama's inauguration as the first Black president. Young readers will take away the full arc of Franklin's story, from child prodigy to talented artist to icon, and how it comes full circle, because after all the accolades and influence, in the end, Franklin is a down-to-earth Detroit woman known as Ree-Ree. Grades K-2. Copyright 2020 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Riffing on the memorably sung spelling of Franklin's hit "Respect," each spread of this picture book biography pairs a single word with a rhyming couplet to trace the sweep of Franklin's life: "T-A-L-E-N-T/ Young Aretha's solos soar with artistry./ Her wise father senses his daughter's destiny." Though the rhymes skew pat ("Aretha's crowned as Queen of Soul, our own royalty./ She wins awards and accolades, and more than one degree"), Weatherford presents an overview of key moments in the notable singer's life, particularly her contributions to the civil rights movement. Morrison's rich illustrations use a stylized realism to depict Franklin's trajectory from preacher's daughter to beloved icon, building to the rapt faces of Barack and Michelle Obama watching as Franklin sings at the 2009 U.S. presidential inauguration. Back matter includes a list of Franklin's hit songs and a detailed biography. Ages 4–8. (Aug.) Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly.

Review by School Library Journal Reviews

PreS-Gr 3—Weatherford, using rhyming couplets to explain important words from Aretha Franklin's life (Detroit, groove, proud, and humble) as she chronicles the Queen of Soul's childhood, her rising stardom, and her political activism. Readers who are craving in-depth details about Franklin can turn to the author's note or other sources, but this book is not a meticulous biography. Rather, Weatherford presents a powerful celebration of the legendary singer that offers snapshots of major life events. Morrison's colorful paintings pulse with energy, and every page is dynamic. The interplay between the deceptively simple narrative and Morrison's illustrations is pitch-perfect. For example, the pages for "Detroit" (the family moves from Memphis, TN) and "Strife" (Barbara Franklin leaves the family after her husband's infidelity) mirror each other to powerful effect: The family stands before a large tree to "put down roots" in each spread, but Barbara is absent in the artwork for "Strife." This beautiful picture book biography packs an emotional punch that is as compelling as the timeless songs that Franklin made famous. VERDICT Purchase this luscious, lyrical book for all nonfiction collections.—Jen McConnel, Queen's Univ., Ont. Copyright 2020 School Library Journal.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

A vibrant portrait of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame music artist includes coverage of Franklin’s Grammy-winning achievements and unfailing dedication to civil rights. By the Caldecott Honor-winning author of Voice of Freedom and the Coretta Scott King Award-winning illustrator of Jazzy Miz Mozetta. 50,000 first printing. Simultaneous eBook. Illustrations.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

"Aretha Franklin was born to sing. The daughter of a pastor and a gospel singer, her musical talent was clear from her earliest days in her father's Detroit church. Aretha sang with a soaring voice that spanned more than three octaves. Her incredible talent and string of hit songs earned her the title "the Queen of Soul." This Queen was a multi-Grammy winner and the first female inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. And there was even more to Aretha than being a singer, songwriter, and pianist: shewas an activist, too. Her song "Respect" was an anthem for people fighting for civil rights and women's rights. With words that sing and art that shines, this vibrant portrait of Aretha Franklin pays her the R-E-S-P-E-C-T this Queen of Soul deserves"--

Review by Publisher Summary 3

Winner of the Coretta Scott King Illustration Award! From a New York Times bestselling author and an acclaimed illustrator comes this vibrant portrait of Aretha Franklin that pays her the R-E-S-P-E-C-T this Queen of Soul deserves.Aretha Franklin was born to sing. The daughter of a pastor and a gospel singer, her musical talent was clear from her earliest days in her father's Detroit church where her soaring voice spanned more than three octaves.Her string of hit songs earned her the title 'the Queen of Soul," multiple Grammy Awards, and a place in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. But Aretha didn't just raise her voice in song, she also spoke out against injustice and fought for civil rights.This authoritative, rhythmic, Coretta Scott King Illustration Award'winning picture book biography will captivate young readers with Aretha's inspiring story.