Review: Young, Gifted And Black Shows Paths To Greatness Start With Childhood Dreams

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“Young, Gifted and Black!” Those are the lyrics to a popular song by Nina Simone.

Author Jamia Wilson decided to write a book with that same name. In Young, Gifted and Black, she features 52 talented black people.  She tells stories about how these people started as regular kids with childhood dreams, and how they became trailblazers when they achieved their dreams.

This book is illustrated by Andrea Pippins and features people from the past and present. Obviously people like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks are in the book but I was surprised that there were also some who are not well known such as Mary Seacole, a Jamaican nurse who cared for British soldiers during the Crimean War and Nicola Adams, a professional boxer from England who became the first woman to win an Olympic gold medal in boxing.

Jamia Wilson writes about people with many different careers, including TV and film directors, and even musicians. These persistent people can inspire anyone to follow their dreams. My favorite story was about Alexandre Dumas, a French man who wrote the famous story The Three Musketeers. Another cool one was of Maya Angelou, one of my Mom’s favorite authors.

I loved this book because it showcased a variety of different people from around the world. There were authors, singers, athletes, actresses and more. I also enjoyed learning about the amazing things black people have accomplished.

I recommend this book to readers who like learning about different people in one book. It is a great book for children ages 9-12, especially during Black History Month!

It gets four roses!



    1. Yes, I did. They all had self-esteem and there were all go-getters. And it seemed like they knew what they wanted to do at a young age. I think the fact that they tried their best and not afraid to give up, even when challenges and obstacles came their way was why they were successful.


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