Edmonia Lewis studies faces for truth or lies, checks classrooms for safety or traps.
She’s sixteen, the daughter of an Ojibwe woman and a free man of color who crossed the country’s border
for safety before the war between North and South.
The nation is still divided
when Edmonia leaves Oberlin under a cloud
of accusation. Can she escape sharp words
about poison, pearls, and stolen paints?
She aims a chisel, swings a mallet, sculpts
the brave, the good, a queen and a young woman
like herself, splitting stone to become whole.
Her marble statues now stand in museums,
but much of the artist’s story was lost.
Jeannine Atkins fills silences and folds facts
into imagination to create a glimpse
of what might have been.
Available from Atheneum Books/Simon & Schuster.
To see work by Edmonia Lewis, visit Pinterest.
Pre-order at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, IndieBound.
Resources for students and educators
Take a look at the list of selected books used in researching Stone Mirrors.
Download the Readers’ Questions and Writing Prompts.
Today’s Little Ditty, Read/listen now...
“How this brave, driven young woman overcame prejudice and trauma to
pursue her artistic calling to the highest level … is a story that
warrants such artful retelling.”
—Booklist, starred review
“Atkins' compressed verse evokes both the racial realities of the
time, including violence, and the artistic process: A fascinating,
"Written with sensitivity and grace, this compelling title of injustice and vindication will leave readers pondering the complicated relationship between pain and art."