Before There Was Mozart: The Story of Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-George (Hardcover)

Before There Was Mozart: The Story of Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de Saint-George Cover Image
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The musical superstar of 18th-century France was Joseph Boulogne—a black man. This inspiring story tells how Joseph, the only child of a black slave and her white master, becomes "the most accomplished man in Europe." After traveling from his native West Indies to study music in Paris, young Joseph is taunted about his skin color. Despite his classmates' cruel words, he continues to devote himself to his violin, eventually becoming conductor of a whole orchestra. Joseph begins composing his own operas, which everyone acknowledges to be magnifique. But will he ever reach his dream of performing for the king and queen of France? This lushly illustrated book by Lesa Cline-Ransome and James E. Ransome introduces us to a talented musician and an overlooked figure in black history.

About the Author

LESA CLINE-RANSOME is the author of highly acclaimed picture book biographies, including "Young Pele Soccer's First Star, " called "stirring" in a starred review from "Booklist; Satchel Paige, " an ALA Notable Book about an African American baseball hero; "Major Taylor: Champion Cyclist, " about an African American cyclist; and "Helen Keller: The World in Her Heart." Visit her at

JAMES E. RANSOME is the illustrator of many award-winning titles, including "Young Pel"e" Soccer's First Star, " a finalist for the NAACP Image Awards; "Satchel Paige;" and "Major Taylor: Champion Cyclist." He is also the illustrator of "Sky Boys: How They Built the Empire State Building" by Deborah Hopkinson, a "Boston Globe-Horn Book" Honor title and an ALA Notable Book; "Creation, " which won a Coretta Scott King Award for Illustration; and "Let My People Go" by Patricia C. McKissack, winner of an NAACP Image Award. Visit him at

Product Details
ISBN: 9780375836008
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade
Publication Date: January 25th, 2011
Pages: 40

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