Review: Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter by Veronica Chambers

Call and Response The Story of Black Lives Matter by Veronica Chambers

Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter
Veronica Chambers
Published August 17, 2021

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About Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter

Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter is a broad and powerful exploration of the history of Black Lives Matter told through photographs, quotes, and informative text by New York Times best-selling authors Veronica Chambers and Jennifer Harlan.

In 2020, the world watched history being made in the streets of America. The rallying cry of Black Lives Matter captured global attention and spurred thousands of people of all ages, races, genders, and backgrounds to stand up for major progressive social reform. The widespread protests, rooted in the call-and-response tradition of the Black community, were fueled by a growing understanding for many that systemic racism undermines the very nature of democracy. But where did this movement begin? And why, after years of work by everyday people, did the world finally begin to take notice?

Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter covers the rise of Black Lives Matter and how it has been shaped by U.S. history. From the founders of the movement—Alicia Garza, Patrisse Cullors, and Opal Tometi—to the watershed moments that challenged people to take action, this book tells the story of how a hashtag became a movement. It follows the activists and organizers on their journeys, examines some of the ways that protest has been fundamental to American history, and shows how marches, rallies, and demonstrations can be vital tools for making meaningful change.

In this essential history, New York Times editors Veronica Chambers and Jennifer Harlan explore Black Lives Matter through striking photographs, in-depth reporting, stunning visual timelines and graphics, and compelling quotes. Call and Response is perfect for young readers who need an introduction to this impactful movement—and for any reader looking for concrete information on this timely topic.

About Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter on Goodreads

My Review

What a powerful book. I feel like I’m still soaking it in.

Things I loved about CALL AND RESPONSE: Not only does this book give a lot of information exploring the history of protest, specifically through the Civil Rights movement and Black Lives Matter movement, it focuses on some really cool elements of those movements. I loved the section on music and the sample playlists, and the one on art and murals. I also loved the section which talks about the different roles at a protest. There are people who clear the path ahead of marchers, people who bring water, food, and medical supplies. Before reading this, I had never really thought about the organizational structure behind those gatherings. So that was really cool to read.

I also really enjoyed reading about the three women credited with founding the Black Lives Matter movement. The story covers both how they came together and what their vision has been for the movement.

The book contains so much great historical information. It’s broken up around beautiful photographs. I feel like this is a great book for home, school, or community libraries.

About Call and Response: The Story of Black Lives Matter on Bookshop

Content Notes

Recommended for Ages 12 up.

Features stories and quotes from interviews with Black activists and leaders from the Civil Rights movement and the Black Lives Matter movement.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
Strong profanity used very infrequently.

Romance/Sexual Content

Spiritual Content
Brief discussion of how enslaved people used spiritual songs to communicate with one another.

Violent Content
References to the killing of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Trayvon Martin, Ahmaud Arbery, Tamir Rice, Philando Castille, and others.

Drug Content

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of CALL AND RESPONSE: THE STORY OF BLACK LIVES MATTER in exchange for my honest review.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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