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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Civil rights icon Ruby Bridges—who, at the age of six, was the first black child to integrate into an all-white elementary school in New Orleans—inspires readers and calls for action in this moving letter. Her elegant, memorable gift book is especially uplifting in the wake of Kamala Harris making US history as the first female, first Black, and first South Asian vice president–elect.
 
Written as a letter from civil rights activist and icon Ruby Bridges to the reader, This Is Your Time is both a recounting of Ruby’s experience as a child who had to be escorted to class by federal marshals when she was chosen to be one of the first black students to integrate into New Orleans’ all-white public school system and an appeal to generations to come to effect change.
 
This beautifully designed volume features photographs from the 1960s and from today, as well as stunning jacket art from The Problem We All Live With, the 1964 painting by Norman Rockwell depicting Ruby’s walk to school.
 
Ruby’s honest and impassioned words, imbued with love and grace, serve as a moving reminder that “what can inspire tomorrow often lies in our past.” This Is Your Time will electrify people of all ages as the struggle for liberty and justice for all continues and the powerful legacy of Ruby Bridges endures.

From School Library Journal

Gr 5 Up—Ruby Bridges displayed courage and resilience when chosen to integrate New Orleans''s all-white public school system in 1960 at the age of six. Bridges pens a "letter of peace" addressed to Congressman John Lewis and "the young peacemakers of the world." She briefly describes her experience. She also explains what it was like for her father to witness his young daughter battle adversity and his own struggles. Her father served in the armed forces during the Korean War only to return to the systemic racism of the United States. Her teacher, Barbara Henry, taught Bridges when white parents refused to let their children share a classroom with her student. The text then recalls the children that Bridges has met in the last 25 years that she has spent traveling and speaking. She hopes that young people can break the cycle of racism and continue to rally against injustice in its many forms. Finally, Bridges speaks to the events of today. She addresses the pain and frustration that has led to a summer of protests after the murder of George Floyd by white Minneapolis police officers. She points out the echoes from the past that still reverberate today (there are several historical and contemporary photos that strike a powerful chord), and she shares her own suffering from having lost one of her sons, who was murdered. Ultimately, she advises readers to have "a heart full of grace." Black-and-white photos enhance this short but exceedingly important book. VERDICT Bridges''s message is timely, powerful, and full of hope. This missive of truth, spoken by a true American hero, deserves a place in all libraries.—John Scott, Friends Sch. of Baltimore

Review

"Powerful.... Bridges’ hopeful words, her faith born of experience, are soothing and encouraging in this time of unrest and uncertainty." — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

Timely, powerful, and full of hope. This missive of truth, spoken by a true American hero, deserves a place in all libraries.” — School Library Journal, starred review

“Ruby experienced unimaginable racial hatred, lost her oldest son to random violence, and still advocates for positive change. Kids will relate to Ruby''s stories on many levels and be inspired by the difference one little girl made.  A profoundly moving book.” — Booklist, starred review

About the Author

Ruby Bridges is a civil rights activist who, at the age of six, was the first black student to integrate an all-white elementary school in New Orleans. She was born in Mississippi in 1954, the same year the United States Supreme Court handed down its landmark decision ordering the integration of public schools. Her family later moved to New Orleans, where on November 14, 1960, Bridges began attending William Frantz Elementary School, single-handedly initiating the desegregation of public education in New Orleans. Her walk to the front door of the building was immortalized in Norman Rockwell''s famous painting The Problem We All Live With, in Robert Coles''s book The Story of Ruby Bridges, and in the Disney movie Ruby Bridges.

This Is Your Time is her first book in over twenty years, following the publication of her award-winning autobiography Through My Eyes.

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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 54.8 out of 5
2,288 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

James B. Creighton
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
What a Marvelous Story for Children of All Ages!
Reviewed in the United States on November 12, 2020
Ms. Bridges, THANK YOU, for this wonderful personal story. As a gay white man who grew up in South Carolina (until he was 15) who, simply because I was “different,” was beaten daily for 8 years by his stepfather, ostracized by his other family members, and threatened with... See more
Ms. Bridges, THANK YOU, for this wonderful personal story. As a gay white man who grew up in South Carolina (until he was 15) who, simply because I was “different,” was beaten daily for 8 years by his stepfather, ostracized by his other family members, and threatened with hanging by hordes of youths who would follow me home as I walked from school, I wondered, “What did I do? Why doesn’t anyone like me?” I never understood. And those questions have lingered all of my adult life.

Now, please don’t misunderstand me: I do not pretend to know your suffering and that of your fellow African American sisters and brothers; ours is suffering of a different magnitude and, perhaps, nature. By no means do I mean to equate my suffering with yours as a way to tell you, “I understand,” because I don’t. But I know the face of EVIL. Once anyone attuned to our human condition sees the face of EVIL, it is never forgotten.

But, as you told Scott Simon on NPR’s Weekend Edition, which aired on 11/7/2020, EVIL does not discriminate. EVIL is color blind. And, when any of us allows EVIL into our minds and our lives, all of us lose.

I honor you, Dear Lady, for the past 25 years of service to our country’s young people throughout the states. You are a cherished Hero to me. Even so, I bet you would look me straight in my eyes and say, “Jay, do NOT lionize me. Instead, get out and do some good on your own. Each of us has something POSITIVE to give; each of us is UNIQUE, imbued with God’s colors of love. Your gift to young children over these past years is a most beautiful gift of yourself.

Thank you for this wonderful story. I know that my note is one of many thousands that you will receive. I do not ask for a response. But I do hope I have given you a smile, of the heart. Because that’s what you’ve given me, Ms. Bridges.

And, I am truly sorry for your loss of your beautiful son, Craig. May his memory in your heart embolden you to keep moving forward, my Dear Lady.

James Creighton
November 12, 2020
79 people found this helpful
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Fay A. Wooley
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Disappointed
Reviewed in the United States on November 11, 2020
This "book" has 52 pages. Most of those have at most a paragraph on them or a picture. If I had had the opportunity to peruse this "book" in real time, I would never have purchased it. I really wanted to learn who this child was and who she had grown into!
22 people found this helpful
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byjove
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great for kids
Reviewed in the United States on November 11, 2020
I bought this book to read with my elementary school age daughters, of whom I think is the target audience. The text juxtaposed against the historical pictures was really powerful and opened up great discussion points, and it also helped give context to what is happening in... See more
I bought this book to read with my elementary school age daughters, of whom I think is the target audience. The text juxtaposed against the historical pictures was really powerful and opened up great discussion points, and it also helped give context to what is happening in the Black Lives Matter movement today.
15 people found this helpful
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Truth Rules
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
For an elementary School Child - Not what I expected
Reviewed in the United States on November 12, 2020
First, this is a Very tiny book with just a few pages. It is geared more for elementary school children than adults. Just a paragraph or two on each page. I appreciate the ordeals that Ms. Bridges went thru and her place in history. I knew her story. I only bought this... See more
First, this is a Very tiny book with just a few pages. It is geared more for elementary school children than adults. Just a paragraph or two on each page. I appreciate the ordeals that Ms. Bridges went thru and her place in history. I knew her story. I only bought this book because I saw her on TV and she said that she wrote this book to speak to the young people protesting on the streets. I don''t she did that. Ms. Bridges only re-told her story and only made a statement or two at the end which she directed to the young adults in the movement. However, I will give this book to my 8-year-old granddaughter because it is a story she should know and will hopefully help her overcome obstacles in life. Disappointing.
12 people found this helpful
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Eddie
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
This Truly Is Your Time...
Reviewed in the United States on November 12, 2020
I love and admire Ruby Bridges with all my heart. I read her book, Ruby Bridges Goes to School to my own students as I taught them about the history of civil rights in America and how important it is for all of us to carry the knowledge and light of freedom and to cherish,... See more
I love and admire Ruby Bridges with all my heart. I read her book, Ruby Bridges Goes to School to my own students as I taught them about the history of civil rights in America and how important it is for all of us to carry the knowledge and light of freedom and to cherish, love, and support all of our brothers and sisters, regardless of our skin color. This is a wonderful and inspiring book.
9 people found this helpful
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Ed J
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Power message using words and photographs
Reviewed in the United States on November 10, 2020
This book is exceptional because it provides a glimpse into the perspective of hero of the 1960’s era Civil Right Movement. Using words and both vintage and present day photos, it compares our challenges with racism in 2020 to those of an earlier time. A reader of any age... See more
This book is exceptional because it provides a glimpse into the perspective of hero of the 1960’s era Civil Right Movement. Using words and both vintage and present day photos, it compares our challenges with racism in 2020 to those of an earlier time. A reader of any age would be touched by its message.
10 people found this helpful
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MamasGottaRead
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Packs an emotional punch for young and old alike...
Reviewed in the United States on March 4, 2021
I''m so glad that a sweet Bookstagram friend recommended this book. It is a short, impactful book for young readers, but still packed an emotional punch for me. It is filled with historic and gut-wrenching photos, and Ms. Bridges does an exquisite job connecting with her... See more
I''m so glad that a sweet Bookstagram friend recommended this book. It is a short, impactful book for young readers, but still packed an emotional punch for me. It is filled with historic and gut-wrenching photos, and Ms. Bridges does an exquisite job connecting with her young audience.

The biggest aha moment for me was sharing it with my young boys for Black History Month and recognizing that I''ve not taught them nearly enough about the history of racial injustice in our country. They were truly shocked that anyone would treat another human being like this in the United States of America. The discussion led to the current state of affairs with regard to racial equality and it was such an eye-opening and productive lesson for all of us.

Ms. Ruby Bridges, if you''re reading this, I assume that this was your plan all along: to inform our youth and spark discussion - and that is just what you have done for our family! Thank you for sharing this gift and for your bravery (and that of your parents) during those times of ignorance in our nation.
One person found this helpful
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Bill EmblomTop Contributor: Baseball
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
And A Child Shall Lead Them
Reviewed in the United States on February 3, 2021
What am I going to add that 1367 other reviews have already posted? Ruby Bridges was a pioneer in every sense of the word. The hatred of adults is rooted in fear. Of what I''m not sure. Is it the fear of losing control or power? America has not advanced in eliminating... See more
What am I going to add that 1367 other reviews have already posted? Ruby Bridges was a pioneer in every sense of the word. The hatred of adults is rooted in fear. Of what I''m not sure. Is it the fear of losing control or power? America has not advanced in eliminating racism as much as we may think we have. We certainly are not a country with "liberty and justice for all." There is the justice for those who possess power and influence and there is "justice" for those who don''t possess those attributes. We never know how much we influence others with our behavior and Ruby Bridges certainly will never know how much she has influenced the behavior of other people. Thank you, Ruby Bridges, for using your life to serve as a model to encourage others of all races to follow.
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Top reviews from other countries

Donna McIntosh
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Small book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 29, 2021
I am very disappointed in the book, as it doesn''t tell you a lot. I read this in less than half hour. for the price it was terrible, how do I return this as I expected this to be a bit more interesting. this was a book for a 6year olds
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EMMA SALTER 1
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A must read!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 28, 2021
Emotional,painful and truly inspirational read and the pictures are harrowing but needed. A book that’s imprinted on my heart.
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Aaron Stuckert
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Expensive but Great <3
Reviewed in Canada on March 31, 2021
I''ve been homeschooling my son for the last year and this month we''re learning about black history. I think it''s a little bit overpriced at $22.99 Canadian for how small it is. I still love it though and I plan on sharing this book with others so there was value in it for...See more
I''ve been homeschooling my son for the last year and this month we''re learning about black history. I think it''s a little bit overpriced at $22.99 Canadian for how small it is. I still love it though and I plan on sharing this book with others so there was value in it for me.
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Helen L.
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Educational for younger kids
Reviewed in Canada on December 31, 2020
Not much information but good pictures. I gather it is more for children, educational.
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Judy Chretien
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Informative and easy read.
Reviewed in Canada on December 28, 2020
My granddaughter is 6 years old with a white mother and a black father. I love them so much. As a white grandmother, it is important that I understand the issues of a black person. I had No idea of their struggles with daily life.
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