This fascinating look at a little known Wild West hero received a Coretta Scott King award this year. Nelson researched the life of African-American Bass Reeves, from his childhood in slavery to his 32 years as U.S. Marshall under the powerful Judge Isaac C. Parker. Reeves sought out criminals “on the lam” in Indian Territory and “was blazing fast on the draw and as good with his left hand as with his right.” He was never taught to read or write, but he was greatly respected and could memorize warrants and always brought in his man (or woman). Some outlaws just decided to turn themselves in when they heard Bass had them on his list. This great bit of history brought back to life by children’s librarian Vaunda Nelson is one you don’t want to miss.
-reviewed by Jennifer