Extended Audio Sample

Download Black Jack: Ballad of Jack Johnson Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Black Jack: Ballad of Jack Johnson (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Charles R. Smith
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (89 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Charles R. Smith Narrator: Dion Graham Publisher: Live Oak Media Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2012 ISBN:
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A powerful telling of the first African-American heavyweight champion, this story portrays how a shy, fearful young man learned to fight back and become one of history's more compelling personalities. Children will be awed and inspired by the boxer's energy and drive which is duly reflected through the rhythmic text and excellent narration.

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Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ali | 12/30/2013

    " Wonderful book tells the colorful story of Jack Johnson, the first African American heavyweight champ in clever rhymes. This book will help mold the identity of young African American males, demonstrating both the struggles and the opportunities so prevalent in their lives. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 MaryJane | 12/16/2013

    " The artwork is just amazing! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maureen Milton | 12/14/2013

    " Read this today for a Mock Caldecott session at Multnomah County Library and found it to be the most compelling choice. The illustrations with the motif of the mighty fighter's hands and the effective use of perspective, space and type help to amplify this fine homage to the great boxer. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Edward Sullivan | 7/16/2013

    " A handsomely illustrated, engaging introduction to the world's first black heavyweight champion. The illustrations and text effectively capture Jack Johnson's defiance, fearlessness, and flamboyance. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Bethe | 12/14/2012

    " I've never heard of this guy, a Texan, the first black heavyweight boxing champion. Other reviews mention the poor rhyming - I didn't even notice it tried to rhyme. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jess | 12/7/2012

    " A nice biography to introduce readers to boxer Jack Johnson. Lyrical text makes for easy reader and the illustrations are simple and clean. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy) | 10/9/2012

    " I have mixed feelings on this one. Some strengths and some weaknesses. It's almost as if the book (esp. the text) can't make up it's mind in terms of how it wants to read (narrative, verse, etc.) as well as unsure of the real message. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christina | 7/15/2012

    " beautiful picture book biography of Jack Johnson, the first black heavyweight boxing champion. Catchy rhyming text and striking illustrations, and an age-appropriate depiction of racial inequalities of the time and why Jack became so popular. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Boni | 4/9/2012

    " A striking-looking book and an important, interesting subject, but the uneven rhyme/prose mix made it a difficult read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karen | 3/26/2012

    " I had issues with the flow of the text but loved the illustrations. Definite 3 1/2 stars. "

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About the Author

Charles R. Smith Jr. is an award-winning author, photographer, and poet with more than thirty books to his credit. His awards include a Coretta Scott King Award for his photographs accompanying the Langston Hughes poem “My People” and a Coretta Scott King Honor for his biography on Muhammad Ali, Twelve Rounds to Glory. He is the author of Rimshots, Hoop Kings, Hoop Queens, Tall Tales, Short Takes, Diamond Life, and I Am America. He currently lives in Poughkeepsie, New York, with his wife, Gillian, and their three kids.

About the Narrator

Dion Graham, from HBO’s The Wire, also narrates The First 48 on A&E. Winner of fifteen Earphones Awards and the prestigious Audie Award for best narration, he has performed on Broadway, off Broadway, internationally, in films, and in several hit television series. His performances have been praised as thoughtful and compelling, vivid and full of life.