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review 2017-04-23 21:30
March: Book Three by John Lewis
March: Book Three - Andrew Aydin,Nate Powell,John Lewis Gaddis

And with this, I've completed the trilogy. I am so happy I read this. It helped educate me on the finer details that helped bring about the Civil Rights Movement. In this volume, we follow John Lewis from the streets of Atlanta, Georgia to the entire continent of Africa and back to the streets of Selma, Alabama. This volume covers the events of Bloody Sunday, the 1965 Voters' Rights Act, and so much more.

 

John Lewis has a way of telling these important events in a conversational tone. And sometimes it sounds as if we're getting to sit in an academic setting and hearing his lecture of his time on the battleground. For that's what it was: a battleground. So many people mercilessly killed because they just wanted the same rights as white people. It's horrific and wrong. And although this is a very difficult read, it is also an important one.

 

The artwork is gritty. It's a lovely style, but it does not sugarcoat what went on during those times. And I am grateful that it doesn't. People need to see the blood, the violence, the deaths. They need to be reminded that these events happened and they could easily happen again if we are not careful. We need to be vigilant and help each other as much as we can. Because that's what it means to be human. I've learned so much about these events and I shall continue to educate myself and fighting for the rights of others.

 

Please read all three volumes of March. Especially if you don't know much about what America was like during the 60's. Lewis packs in a lot of information, yes, but it's vital to know who played a role in our history and how we got to where we are today. These are not easy reads, but I think the knowledge and experience you gain from reading these books are well worth it. I love these books and I will definitely be adding them to my personal library.

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review 2017-04-23 06:38
March: Book Two by John Lewis
March: Book Two - Andrew Aydin,Nate Powell,John Robert Lewis

This is a disturbing, harrowing, yet beautiful and important continuation to John Lewis's role in the Civil Rights Movement. This continues after his early life within the SNCC and how he became one of the "Big Six" as well as what happened during the March on Washington. 

 

Once again, I do not feel right reviewing this book. As I've said in my previous review, this is our history. This happened. The segregation, the violence, the murders... all of this was experienced by people. Real people. People whose lives were taken from them far too soon because of the blind hatred running rampant during those times... that could still rise up today if we are not careful.

 

John Lewis is an incredible man for working as hard as he did. Everyone who participated during the movement were all amazing! Every single one of them. From the leaders in the groups to the ones marching in the streets. Every single one of them were brave, incredible, amazing people who risked their lives... and sometimes lost them... in order for us to be here today. Thank you.

 

I will just reiterate: Please read these graphic novels. If you want to know history, if you want to understand what others went through and sacrificed so that we can have a better future, please read this. Educate yourselves as much as you possibly can. If you want to make a difference, know your history, learn from it, then we can move forward.

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review 2017-04-22 05:10
March: Book One by John Lewis
March (Book One) - Andrew Aydin,Nate Powell,John Robert Lewis

Lately, I've been trying to educate myself in areas of life where my knowledge is sorely lacking. A part of that lacking is how the Civil Rights Movement came about. Then, recently, I learned about Congressman John Lewis and his role in the Civil Rights Movement. When I heard about this graphic novel, I went to my library and placed orders for all three volumes. Now, after having read just the first volume, I can tell this is going to be one of the most important reads of my life.

 

How does one even begin to review a book like this? This is our history. This is extremely important information to know. Not only if you live in America, but for the world. What John Lewis and so many others did to help put an end (and there's still a lot more we have to do in order to fully put an end to racism and discrimination of any kind) to the injustices that were happening during that time period is astounding and is worth more than what my measly review can cover here.

 

So instead of reviewing this book like I would normally do, I will simply talk about the importance this graphic novel holds and how much I urge you to pick up this book. Or to pick up any book by John Lewis, really. 

 

This graphic novel covers the beginning of John Lewis's life where he grew up in a farm in Alabama and it covers his early teens to when he's a young adult at college. The story is harrowing, to say the least. This is a time where black people were beaten and killed for just looking at a white person... so you know this is going to be a hard read. But it is a necessary one. So please. Read this book. To educate yourself on our history. To learn from the brutal and cruel mistakes of our past. To have a better future.

 

This is not a book I think is an enjoyable read. How can you enjoy reading about people being stripped away of their rights and humanity? No. I will say this is an important read and, in a sense, a good one. Pick it up! The artwork is dark and matches the story perfectly, and the graphic novel might give some insight to how we got to where we are today and how we still have so much work left to do. I highly recommend this graphic novel.

 

I'm off to read the other two books in this trilogy. I have a feeling it's going to be just as painful and important to read.

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review 2017-04-01 18:51
Not the approach I like but would resonate with other readers.
Across That Bridge: Life Lessons and a Vision for Change - John Robert Lewis

I was intrigued to see this book by Lewis, after reading his graphic novel trilogy and autobiography. This book looks at Lewis's work specifically with the Civil Rights Movement and how particular values (Patience, Faith, etc.) played into the work that went into the CRM.

 

Since I've had a few books relating to the topic I was curious how this would work. Lewis takes each of the values and relates how and why they were part of the CRM. It was an interesting take--not a "how to" manual by any means but if someone is perhaps questioning the "why" or was wondering what drove these individuals to participate or how their personal values were integrated into the Movement, etc. this might be a book to grant the reader some perspective. 

 

Personally this is not an approach I care for. I usually do not like books that are overly religious/spiritual in tone.This book was not at all preachy by any means, but as a reader this format and approach is not one for me. I got more out of his own book and GNs but that's just me. And if the reader is not familiar with Lewis, his work with the CRM, etc. then this book would probably be lost or not have as much impact.

 

I don't regret reading it but was glad my library had a copy to borrow. And I do think there are certainly people who might get a lot out of it, or at least understand the CRM and its historical/society/personal/political impact a little better. I think quite a few people could actually stand to read the book to understand the work/time/labor needed for the CRM and understand the struggle for equality and civil rights is still an ongoing one that has used and even required the qualities Lewis writes about.

 

It's also a relatively short book so if you need a quick read it might fit the bill.

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review 2017-03-08 01:00
An excellent read for a very important part of history.
Walking with the Wind: A Memoir of the Movement - John Robert Lewis,Michael D'Orso

Rep. John Lewis has been in the news more and more recently, especially with the election and the new president. With the end of Black History month it seemed like a good time to read his book. 

 

Most of the book chronicles his work in the Civil Rights Movement. We get introduced to his early life and growing up and we gradually see him move into working with the CRM. These early parts were really interesting to me. It really hit home that it was (and remains) a body of work that required a lot of time, energy, labor, bodies (literally), emotional effort, etc. The participants spent years, decades putting work into the movement.

 

It hit home for me that movements like CRM isn't something that can appear out of nowhere but requires a large chunk of people in ways that are sometimes intangible. And even though we live in an age of people getting messages instantly and want things done right now, something like the CRM couldn't be accomplished in that way. It was definitely a book that has given me a lot of food for thought in light of current and recent events.

 

That said, I agree with a lot of the reviews that said it could have been edited more. As a chronicle it is a book that will probably remain critical and important for historians. But as a layperson who had read his graphic novel trilogy ("March") and had read some civil rights history very recently (and therefore it is relatively fresh in my mind), this was still easy to get lost in the myriad of names, group acronyms, etc. 

 

However, of course I don't mind regret reading it or buying it. It was an enjoyable read and I learned a lot. There are quite a few people who could really benefit from reading this. That said, it might be helpful if you've read his graphic novel trilogy as mentioned above and have at least a grounding in the CRM. The movie 'Selma' might also be a good compliment to this book as well. Already having that foundation made it easier for me to be able to put down the book when life got in the way yet still understand at what of history I had dropped off. Great if you need a long book, non-fiction read or want to read up on the Civil Rights Movement.

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