Underground: Finding the Light to Freedom: 07/16/15
Underground: Finding the Light to Freedom by Shane W. Evans won the 2012 Coretta Scott King award for illustration. Told in the dark blues, lavenders and grays of night, it follows a family as they try to make it to the next stop along the Underground Railroad.
Have you ever walked at night without benefit of street lamps or flash light, trying to take a path you might know by heart in daylight? What about a trail that you've never visited? Now imagine having to do this quietly because your life and your children's lives depend on it.
The stark illustrations, really nearly abstract drive the experience home. There is danger and urgency in the eyes of this family. The only break in the monochrome pallet is the light in the cabin, signally arrival and safety.
Underground can be used as a visually stunning introduction to an important part of U.S. history and help children think about what it might have been like to take the Underground Railroad.