The President Sang Amazing Grace: A Book About Finding Grace After Unspeakable Tragedy – Zoe Mulford, illustrated by Jeff Scher


      The President Sang Amazing Grace: A Book About Finding Grace After Unspeakable Tragedy – Zoe Mulford, illustrated by Jeff Scher, Cameron Kids, 9781944903848, 2019

Format: Hardcover

Rating:  1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5

 What did you like about the book?  This is such a powerful book and it brought back all the strong emotions of that horrible day in Charleston and the unbelievable strength and compassion shown by President Obama and the survivors during the funeral service for the Honorable Reverend Clementa Pinckney. This book is actually a song written by Zoe Mulford about this tragedy. The lyrics begin by showing the African-American church in South Carolina and how parishioners gathered for a Bible study group. The song goes on to explain that a stranger entered the church but was not denied and allowed to sit and pray with them. The song then continues with the massacre of nine church members and the process of rebuilding after this tragedy which includes  President Obama’s visit to the church and, during his eulogy, leading the congregation in the singing of “Amazing Grace”. The beautiful watercolor illustrations provided by Jeffrey Scher complement the wonderful message of this song.

Anything you did not like about the book. Nothing

 To whom would you recommend this book? Because this book involves a mass shooting I think it is very important for parents to decide what age is appropriate to share this information with their children. There is a positive message of grace and hope in the aftermath of tragedy.

Who should buy this book? Public and elementary school  libraries.

Where would you shelve it? 323

 Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Yes.

 Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Kristin Guay, former youth services librarian.

Date of review: October 10, 2019

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