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Reviewed by Jacqueline Ruiz for Readers' Favorite
Who is Marcus Garvey? Some people who have studied civil rights would know. Others who are from Jamaica would also know. If you were around in the 1920s and ‘30s, there’s a strong chance you would have heard of Mr. Garvey. I had no idea who he was so I decided to read this book — after all, it’s titled The Successes of Marcus Garvey, so I was curious. Who is he and what did he succeed in doing? Written by Akua Agusi, this book chronicles the life and times of Marcus Garvey. He was a Jamaican native who traveled to the U.S. in 1916. Garvey’s goal in life was to help Africans live a better life.
Perhaps one of his most talked-about successes is the creation of the U.N.I.A., which stands for the Universal Negro Improvement Association. This was a group that helped Africans open businesses — basically they helped each other out. The U.N.I.A. also helped Black people gain employment and other opportunities. Garvey also started a weekly newspaper called “Negro World,” to inform readers of certain issues.
One thing that I thought interesting and liked about this book is that although it has very creative and colorful drawings depicting Marcus Garvey, it also has real pictures of him interspersed throughout. I find it fascinating, in a book or movie, when we can see the actual person we are learning about. Although this book is geared toward young readers, I think it does a great job of introducing us to such an important person in African history (As I have recently learned!).