- Lively and entertaining! I couldn’t put it down!
Wonderful detailed story … Ms. Hubbard weaves Wink’s exciting racing triumphs with his struggles of enduring racism, world war and exile.
Dramatic artwork …
An inspiring story of hope and dreams with important lessons about racial discrimination and injustices. But let’s face it, although it is a lively and entertaining detailed story with dramatic artwork, it’s a book that’s written for children and belongs in an elementary school library. So my opinion means squat.
Conveniently, my daughter, Alice, is in 2nd grade. Not only is she a voracious reader – Ramona the Brave by Beverly Cleary is currently on her bedside table – but she’s also my occasional companion at the racetrack, so she has a basic understanding of horse racing, albeit she’s kind of clueless about the prominence of the Kentucky Derby.
Nonetheless, I asked Alice to read and review The Last Black King of the Kentucky Derby. I merely transcribed and edited her review, answered a few questions, and made popcorn.
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My Book Review of The Last Black King of the Kentucky Derby
This book is really really good. I give it two thumbs up. I like going to the racetrack with Mom but she says that the Kentucky Derby is not at Lone Star Park and that I will never see the race in my lifetime because it costs more that our trip to Walt Disneyworld and Mom says I would have to marry a millionaire. If Hudson becomes a millionaire I could marry him when I grow up and go to the Kentucky Derby! Also, I think that Hudson would like this book because he is smart. He also likes horses, I think. And cats, too.
In the story, Jimmy Winkfield is a jockey and he’s a good jockey. But I guess people don’t like him because he’s black. “Racial conflicts,” it says in the book. I don’t understand it. I mean, President Obama is black. So’s my friend, Alexis. Everybody likes them and they’re good people.
Anyway, Jimmy Winkfield – they call him Wink, for short – won two Kentucky Derbies in a row in 1901 and 1902. That was a long time ago, even before my Mom and Dad were born. The horses’ names were His Eminence and Alan-a-Dale. The next year he wanted to win another race but he came in second. Then he moved to Russia.
It is a good book and I will bring it to my teacher, Mrs. Lewis, and maybe she will read it to our class.
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Mom says: This book provides a wonderful opportunity for young children to learn about horse racing as well the struggles endured by African-Americans; it certainly opened up some serious discussions with my own child. And more importantly, it teaches that you can achieve your dreams.