Published by HarperCollins
Summary: The story begins with the author recounting how her family loved watching the original Star Trek, particularly because of Lieutenant Uhuru, acted by Nichelle Nichols, a Black woman who played the communications officer on the Enterprise. The narrative then goes back to Nichelle’s childhood where she was encouraged by her parents to do whatever she wanted. She loved performing, first as a ballet dancer and later as a singer and actress. This gave her confidence when she got the part on Star Trek, but that confidence began to wane when she experienced racism on the show. She told Gene Rodenberry that she was quitting, but changed her mind when she met a fan–Martin Luther King, Jr. who told her Star Trek was the only show he and his wife let the kids stay up late to watch. He convinced her to stay on the show and serve as a role model to Black children. Includes information on Nichelle’s role with NASA helping to recruit a more diverse workforce, including Mae Jemison and Guion Bluford; also an author’s note. 40 pages; grades 1-5.
Pros: I’m excited to read this book to several of my classes beginning today. The subject matter, the engaging writing style, and the colorful illustrations make it an excellent choice for sharing Black history…and the cameo by MLK was a fun surprise!
Cons: No additional resources listed.
One thought on “To Boldly Go: How Nichelle Nichols and Star Trek Helped Advance Civil Rights by Angela Dalton, illustrated by Lauren Semmer”
Looks great! Nichelle was certainly a big inspiration!