Review: The Traveling Camera
Title: The Traveling Camera Lewis Hine and the Fight to End Child Labor
Author: Alexandra S.D. Hinrichs
Illustrator: Michael Garland
Expected release date: 09/14/21
What's it about?
Lewis Hine was a social reformer in the late 1800's and early 1900's. His camera was his weapon against the unjust conditions children found themselves in. He used the photos his camera yielded to show others the harsh conditions and convince the right people that child labor laws needed to come into play. This is the story of how he fought to protect the younger population of laborers.
This isn't a book like the others I usually tend to review. There are no major characters to pick a favorite or least favorite from. There's really just one...Lewis Hine. There's no string of events to pick a favorite and least favorite from. Instead there's beautiful images (my son swears they are done with water colors) and a journey of harsh conditions and children too young to be in them.
When I first heard about this book, I first thought of my oldest daughter. She studied social reforms and those who lead the way in school this year (2020-21). Then I started to question if I should be excited about the book. The truth is, this movement was needed because what was happening was dark, dangerous and upsetting. Children were loosing limbs and even their lives! It's a tough subject and can be very disturbing, so how are they going to attack this topic with out giving kids nightmares?
Well, I think they did a great job. They focused more on Lewis, telling broad short stories about individuals he came across and gave just enough details to introduce the idea without going so far that the children are scared for life.
The lyrical story telling mixed with italicized excerpts pulled from Mr. Hine's own writings enlightened and educated me in a non threatening way. My daughter and I loved being able to enjoy the story and then advance into some more in depth, historical information given in the last few black and white pages. I appreciated the sensitivity that Ms. Hinrichs used to tell this warrior's story and celebrate his hard work and determination to help, but one of the things I appreciated most was that both my daughter and I thought this would be a great companion to the chapters she studied in history class. I can't help but to be proud to help those thirsty for knowledge and interested in history find their way to this wealth of