I love School Library Journal’s Battle of the Kids Books, it’s like March Madness for the children’s book crowd. This year, it’s very exciting that one of Lerner’s books, No Crystal Stair by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson, illustrated by R. Gregory Christie has advanced to the final round! It will compete against Code Named Verity by Elizabeth Wein on Monday. It’s going to be an exciting match!
No Crystal Stair is the story of Lewis Michaux (the author’s grand-uncle) and his founding of the African National Memorial Bookstore in Harlem. When a white banker told him to sell fried chicken, not books, because “Negroes don’t read”, Lewis took five books and $100 and built a bookstore. Patrons included Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X and his store became the intellectual center of Harlem.
Read Battle of the Kid’s Books judge James Patterson’s review of No Crystal Stair and why he selected it as the Round 3 winner here.