March, Book Three by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell
I read this well over a month ago, but considering the present circumstances in which I am finally writing this review, I feel this third of the March trilogy has the most emotional impact. I won’t recap the first two books in the trilogy here, but you can read my other reviews of Books One and Two. You definitely want to read those volumes first. John Lewis sets a lot of context for this third and most explosive act in the saga.
March: Book Three focuses on the Selma march and the explosive conflict between the authorities. John Lewis and his faithful activists do not back down from threats and enactment of violence but instead forge ahead in their quest for equality and civil rights in the 1960s. Their actions finally garner action from President Lyndon B. Johnson, though at great personal cost to each of them, including Lewis himself.
I had heard of the great John Lewis, but had not thought of his current impact on our government. This summer, during the House of Representatives sit-in and the #nobillnobreak rally cry, I realized that his is a legacy that lives on, for both good and sad reasons. The election and the ensuing explosion of hateful racist acts has shown me that now, more than ever, we need stories of courage like March. We need people like John Lewis who believe in peaceful protest and assertiveness. We need people who won’t back down in the face of violence and hatred. Seriously, read March. And then contact local and federal organizations that protect vulnerable populations here in the United States. I’m waiting to hear back from Council on American-Islamic Relations, as we speak. I’ll contact an LGBT+ organization next.
Also: THIS WON THE NATIONAL BOOK AWARD!!!!!!!