Hand In Hand

Hand in Hand is an outpouring of heart, soul, muscle, joy, and humility.

This book illuminates the lives of our nation’s bravest men whose legacy comes together, like an unbreakable chain, to create one story―the story of how all of us can triumph when we roll up our sleeves, reach for a dream, and hold on until that dream comes true. Like the achievements of the individuals featured in Hand in Hand, this book was built step-by-step over time.

Here are 10 Hand in Hand behind-the-book secrets that we’d like to share with you.

  1. Hand in Hand started with ten portraits painted as a gift for our son, a teenager, eager to approach young adulthood. The paintings ― rendered in India inks, dyes, and watercolors―reflect the attributes of our kid: bold, determined, outspoken.
  2. The research and writing for Hand in Hand took nearly a decade to complete.
  3. This book was written while seated at a desk, scrawled into several notebooks, drafted in hotel rooms, revised on airplanes, and re-tooled while sailing on a ship. Hand in Hand’s poems were conceived while swimming laps in a pool.
  4. The portraits in Hand in Hand are inspired by carved African tribal masks.
  5. The paint brushes used to render the portraits and illustrations throughout the book are Japanese watercolor brushes that range in size from a baby’s pinkie finger to brushes with bristles as big as a man’s palm.
  6. As Hand in Hand’s creation unfolded, the book was read by girls and boys, teens and teachers, parents and grandparents, all of whom offered valuable feedback.
  7. Paintings for the book were worked on in a studio with two fireplaces and ten drums that were played during work-breaks.
  8. Hand in Hand has adult crossover appeal. It is intended for anyone who likes history, adventure, drama, irony, biography, poetry, fun, excitement.
  9. This 243-page volume weighs nearly three pounds. That’s as much as two Olympic gold medals.
  10. Hand in Hand has been vetted and endorsed by Walter Dean Myers, former National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature.

Find Hand In Hand in our collections!

Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America. Illustrated by Brian Pinkney. Disney/Jump at the Sun, 2012.

Hand In Hand