Illustrated by Ekua Holmes

Starred reviews from BooklistKirkus & SLJ

Selected as the 2019 Texas Great Read


Also available in Spanish (¿Qué haces con una voz así?)

Even as a child growing up in the Fifth Ward of Houston, Texas, Barbara Jordan stood out for her big, bold, booming, crisp, clear, confident voice. It was a voice that made people sit up, stand up, and take notice.

So what do you do with a voice like that?

Barbara took her voice to places few African American women had been in the 1960s: first law school, then the Texas state senate, then up to the United States congress. Throughout her career, she persevered through adversity to give voice to the voiceless and to fight for civil rights, equality, and justice.

New York Times bestselling author Chris Barton and Caldecott Honoree Ekua Holmes deliver a remarkable picture book biography about a woman whose struggles and mission continue to inspire today.

48 pages
Ages 4 and up
Beach Lane Books/Simon & Schuster
ISBN: 9781481465618

Praise for What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?


Other Links

AASL Knowledge QuestWhat Do You Do with a Voice Like That? The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan

Abilene Reporter News: Texas Reads

The Alcalde: New Books from the Longhorn Universe to Read this 2018 Holiday Season

Austin American-Statesman: New books: Stories of Barbara Jordan, Rosa Parks and Ruth Bader Ginsburg to inspire kids

The B&N Kids Blog: From the Big Bang to the Barnyard: 10 New Picture Books

The Bay State Banner: Ekua Holmes illustrations to be featured in two new books

Beth Anderson, Children’s Writer: What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?

Booklist: Top 10 Biographies for Youth: 2019

Bookshelves of Doom: What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?: The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan, by Chris Barton

D.C. Area Educators for Social Justice: Learning About the Power of Voice from the Story of Barbara Jordan

The Horn Book: Profile of 2019 CSK Illustrator Award winner Ekua Holmes

Houston Bar Association: Constitution Day Readings

Houston Chronicle: Local booksellers serve up holiday picks

ILA Literacy Daily: Looking Back at 2018 Nonfiction

Kid Lit Frenzy: Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: Favorite Nonfiction Picture Books of 2018 Part I

Kid Lit Frenzy: Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?

Librarian’s Quest: Heads Turned. People Stopped And Listened.

Lone Star Literary Life: Chris Barton on encouraging children’s natural gifts, the joys of collaborating with a gifted illustrator, and what the late Honorable Barbara Jordan might say in 2018

Lone Star Literary Life: Top Twenty Texas Books of 2018

Nerdy Book Club: 22 More Barbara Jordan Books, Please

The Nonfiction Detectives: Best Biographies of 2018

The Nonfiction Detectives: What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?

Out of the Box: Picture-book biographies of pioneering women 2019

PechaKucha: What was left out of What Do You Do with a Voice Like That?

Penn Today: Children’s literature as ‘seed work’

Publishers Weekly: An Anti-Racist Children’s and YA Reading List

PW ShelfTalker: The Power of Silence

This Picture Book Life: Ekua Holmes’ Picture Book Life

Reading Style Guide: Texas Legend

San Francisco Chronicle: Roundup of children’s books, Nov. 25

School Library Journal: Honoring African American Women and Girls, Past and Present

Social Justice Books: Women’s History Month: A Book Every Day

Texas Library Association: 2019 Texas Topaz Nonfiction Reading List

This American Life: Where Have You Gone, Barbara Jordan? Our Nation Turns Its Lonely Eyes to You

What’s Not Wrong?: Review: What Do You Do with a Voice Like That? The Story of Extraordinary Congresswoman Barbara Jordan by Chris Barton

Wonderland: What Happens If You Plant 10,000 Sunflowers At The Heart Of Boston’s Black Community?

A Year of Reading: Making Time and Space for Nonfiction–Some NF Books to Add to Our Classroom Library