Strange Fruit: Uncelebrated Narratives from Black History, by Joel Christian Gill (book review) – graphic novel

book cover of Strange Fruit by Joel Christian Gill published by Fulcrum BooksA cycling champion,
a chessmaster,
a marshal who memorized arrest warrants –
lives of purpose whose stories are rarely told.

Nine “Uncelebrated Narratives from Black History” come to life through Joel Christian Gill’s unique art in this graphic novel, originally a series of mini-comics.

Gill took the name for his comic series from Abel Meerpol’s “Strange Fruit” about lynchings in the South, hauntingly performed by Billie Holiday.

Ask for Strange Fruit at your local library or independent bookstore – they may have to order this June 3rd #diversebooks release, but it’ll be worth the wait.

Any suggestions for Gill to include in volume 2?


Book info: Strange Fruit, Volume 1: Uncelebrated Narratives from Obscure Black History / Joel Christian Gill.  Fulcrum Books, 2014. [author blog]  [publisher site]  [video interview] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

My book talk: Seven outstanding men and two groundbreaking institutions are featured in this graphic novel of little-told stories from African-American history.

Included are lawman Bass Reeves, who arrested 3,000 dangerous criminals during his 30-year career in Indian Territory, and Marshall “Major” Taylor, the Black Cyclone, fastest cyclist in the world in 1899, first black champion in any sport.

Henry “Box” Brown escaped from slavery by being packed in a crate for 27-hour wagon journey. The Noyes Academy in New England (1835) was the first integrated school, but townspeople drove them out.

From the original black pro basketball star to a magician’s greatest illusion, become more familiar with these lives which made a positive difference, despite prejudice.

What do you think?

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