She had “three strikes” against her: she was female, a Native American and queer. But that did not stop Sharice Davids. She took her passion, the support of friends, family, and her community, along with her “big voice,” and showed people what she could and would do. After a long, difficult, but I would suggest rewarding, journey, this allowed her to be one of the only Native American women elected to Congress and the first GLBTQ person to represent Kansas.
Sharice’s Big Voice: A Native Kid Becomes a Congress Woman is a lovely telling of how Davids found a way to go from the being the kid in trouble at school for talking (a lot) and who asked a lot of questions (and yes, I want to know if Bruce Lee kicked a hole in a wall, too!) to the woman who used her voice and her ability to take punches (she became involved in martial arts at a young age) to help those in need.
Easily Davids and Nancy K. Mays could have taken this book in the direction of being heavy handed, or “preachy.” But as the afterwards mentions, this is everyone’s story, and everyone can relate to it. It is respectfully done and presented with lovely text and gorgeous illustrations. The afterward is filled with more information that ties everything together. This makes the book for an older crowd, but the main story is good for ages five and up. I would suggest using it in a classroom up to grade three or so.
The illustrations by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley represent the native heritage of themselves and Davids. They seem simplistic at first glance, but if you really look at them and not skim, you can see the details and how involved they really are. The colors pop and compliment the text. Sometimes things are a little busy, but at the same time, they are not overly crowded.