Ruth and the Green Book

  • Interest Level: Grade 2 - Grade 5   ·  
  • Reading Level: Grade 3

Ruth was so excited to take a trip in her family’s new car! In the early 1950s, few African Americans could afford to buy cars, so this would be an adventure. But she soon found out that black travelers weren’t treated very well in some towns. Many hotels and gas stations refused service to black people. Daddy was upset about something called Jim Crow laws . . .

Finally, a friendly attendant at a gas station showed Ruth’s family The Green Book. It listed all of the places that would welcome black travelers. With this guidebook—and the kindness of strangers—Ruth could finally make a safe journey from Chicago to her grandma’s house in Alabama.

Ruth’s story is fiction, but The Green Book and its role in helping a generation of African American travelers avoid some of the indignities of Jim Crow are historical fact.

Format List Price Your Price Qty
$17.99 $13.49
$34.65 $25.99
Interest Level Grade 2 - Grade 5
Reading Level Grade 3
BISACS JUV011010, JUV000000
Genre Fiction, Picture Books
Subject Diversity, Social Studies
Copyright 2010
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Carolrhoda Books
Language English
Number of Pages 32
Publication Date 2010-08-01
Reading Counts! Level 5.3
ISBN 9780761352556, 9780761362180
Title Format Library Bound Hardcover, Multi-user ebook
Dewey [E]
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 9.25 x 11
Lexile 700
Guided Reading Level R
ATOS Reading Level 4.6
Accelerated Reader® Quiz 138160
Accelerated Reader® Points 0.5
Features Awards, Original artwork, Reviewed, Starred Reviews, Teaching Guides, and eSource

Awards

  • Sequoyah Book Award Nominee, Nominated, 2012
  • Jefferson Cup Award Honor Book, Runner-up, 2011
  • Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List, Long-listed, 2011
  • ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Bronze Award, Commended, 2011
  • Skipping Stones Book Award, Winner, 2011
  • Jane Addams Children's Book Award Honor Book, Commended, 2011
  • Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC) Choices, Winner, 2011
  • SSLI Book Award Best Book, Winner, 2011
  • Whitney and Scott Cardozo Award for Children's Literature Finalist, Commended, 2011
  • Bluestem Award Nominee, Nominated, 2011
  • ALA Notable Children's Books, Winner, 2010
  • Capitol Choices: Noteworthy Books for Children, Winner, 2010
  • Children's Book Committee at Bank Street College Best Children's Book of the Year, Winner, 2010

Reviews

The Horn Book Guide

“Ramsey fashions a well-told historical narrative, supported by Cooper’s expressive paintings.” —The Horn Book Guide

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

“Cooper’s soft, stippled illustrations capture both the pathos of the bigotry and the warmth of the support the family encounters, and a substantial closing note on the Green Book itself invites the audience to explore it further online. This will be a fascinating addition to any civil rights picture-book collection.” —The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

School Library Journal

“The realistic illustrations are done in oil wash on board, a self-described ‘subtractive process.’ The picture is painted, then erased to ‘paint’ the final product. Overall, there is a sepialike quality to the art, giving the impression of gazing at old color photos. This is an important addition to picture book collections, useful as a discussion-starter on Civil Rights or as a stand-alone story.” —School Library Journal

Booklist

“Cooper’s glowing, unframed, sepia-toned artwork delivers a strong sense of the period from a child’s viewpoint. . . . [T]his is a compelling addition to U.S. history offerings.” —Booklist

Kirkus Reviews

“Cooper masterfully captures the emotions of the characters, filling his pages with three-dimensional individuals. This story touches on a little-known moment in American history with elegance, compassion and humanity.” —Kirkus Reviews

Publishers Weekly

“A sense of resiliency courses through Cooper’s (Back of the Bus) filmy illustrations—beatific portraits of the Esso worker who sells the family their Green Book and the owner of a ‘tourist home’ where the family spends the night radiate strength, kindness, and hope for a better future.” —Publishers Weekly

Author: Calvin Alexander Ramsey

Calvin Alexander Ramsey, Atlanta-based playwright, photographer, and folk art painter, grew up in Baltimore, Maryland, and Roxboro, North Carolina. In addition to having been a year-round resident of Martha's Vineyard, Calvin has a passion for travel and has lived in New York City; Santa Monica, California; Chapel Hill, North Carolina; and the U.S. Virgin Islands of St. Croix and St. John.He is a former Advisory Board Member of the Robert Woodruff Library Special Collections at Emory University in Atlanta. He is also a recipient of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Drum Major for Justice Award.His plays have been performed in New York City; Washington, D.C.; Atlanta; San Francisco; Valdez, Alaska; Omaha, Nebraska; Baltimore; and Winston-Salem, North Carolina.His plays include Bricktop, The Musical; The Green Book; Damaged Virtues; Canada Lee; Sherman Town, Baseball, Apple Pie and The Klan; Enlightenment; Sister Soldiers; Kentucky Avenue; Somewhere In My Lifetime; Johnny Mercer: A Man and His Music, a musical tribute to the author of Moon River and others; and The Age of Possibilities. His children's books are The Last Mule of Gee's Bend and Ruth and the Green Book.He is the father of three children, all of whom are writers.

Author: Gwen Strauss

Gwen Strauss's book of poems, Trail of Stones, with illustrations by Anthony Browne was published by Knopf in New York and Walker Books in London. The Night Shimmy (Random House), a children's book with the same illustrator, has been translated into several languages. She is an award-winning poet and her writing has appeared in many publications, including the London Sunday Times, The New Republic, New England Review, Kenyon Review, Tampa Review, and Antioch Review. She works as the on-site director at the Brown Foundation Fellowship Program at the Dora Maar House in Ménerbes, France.

Illustrator: Floyd Cooper

Floyd Cooper is a Coretta Scott King Award winner and the illustrator of Ruth and the Green Book. Floyd received a degree in fine arts from the University of Oklahoma. He lives in Easton, Pennsylvania.

Lerner eSource™ offers free digital teaching and learning resources, including Common Core State Standards (CCSS) teaching guides. These guides, created by classroom teachers, offer short lessons and writing exercises that give students specific instruction and practice using Common Core skills and strategies. Lerner eSource also provides additional resources including online activities, downloadable/printable graphic organizers, and additional educational materials that would also support Common Core instruction. Download, share, pin, print, and save as many of these free resources as you like!

Ruth and the Green Book

Ruth was so excited to take a trip in her family’s new car! In the early 1950s, few African Americans could afford to buy cars, so this would be an adventure. But she soon found out that black travelers weren’t treated very well in some towns. Many hotels and gas stations… View available downloads →