Hot Pursuit is the story of Civil Rights workers Michael Schwerner, James Earl Chaney and Andrew Goodman who were beaten and shot on June 21, 1964. The authors imagine the young men’s conversation when they see a police car pursuing them. Juxtaposed with the imaginative story is a short biography and photograph of each man which explains why they are in Mississippi, the Ku Klux Klan, and how Southern Blacks were often kept from registering to vote. The book’s final page tells of Edgar Ray Killen’s conviction for the murders in 2005. The only reference to Jewish values is in Michael Schwerner’s biography where one sentence states that Michael was inspired by Jewish leaders to fight oppression. The colorful illustrations and photographs complement and enhance the text which is well written in clear and simple language for younger readers. Hot Pursuit is recommended for school libraries, but its Jewish content is negligible. Grades 3 – 6.
Ilka Gordon has a Masters in Education from Boston University and an M.L.I.S. from Kent State University. She is a librarian at Siegal College of Judaic Studies in Cleveland.