for Perfect Timing by Patsi B. Trollinger and Jerome Lagarrigue
In an author’s note, Patsi B. Trollinger notes that the phrase “perfect timing” in this biography of African American jockey Isaac Murphy refers not only to his skill and intuition as a racer, but also the time in which he lived. Born in 1861 near Lexington, Kentucky, he began racing in 1874. His career took place in a window between the end of slavery (if he’d been a slave, this talented jockey would not have been allowed to keep his winnings) and before heavy resistance to black jockeys developed among the white jockeys in the sport. Trollinger’s spirited narrative follows Murphy’s early training and races, building to a riveting description of his career-making win before 40,000 people in 1890. Murphy went on to win the Kentucky Derby three times, as well as many other races. Exquisite Impressionistic-style paintings by Jerome Lagarrigue accompany first-time author Trollinger’s debut. (Ages 6–9)
CCBC Choices 2007 . © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2007. Used with permission.
With stunningly vibrant illustrations by Coretta Scott King Awardwinner Jerome Lagarrigue, Perfect Timing tells the story of Isaac Murphy, the grandson of slaves who escaped a life of labor and poverty by turning a chance offer to ride a horse into one of the most successful jockey careers in the history of racing. Many of Isaac's records remain unbroken today. Filled with paintings that capture the excitement, tension, and movement of a horse race, Perfect Timing is a winning combination of sports, biography, and the inspiring story of an African American who made racing history.
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.