It's always a bit of an impossibility to find good Accelerated Reader (a reading programme commonly used in schools to improve reading) stuff that is non Fiction and is accassible and actually engaging. I absolutely love this Graphic Library collection- there's a history collection, an Archaeology one and a science one, more of that later. They're easy to read, the artwork is excellent and they capture important and sometimes complex theories and historical incidents in a way that's understandable and accurate.
Personally, I'm not so up on history- of any kind. British, military, US, Sporting, Ancient, Kings & Queens...definately not my forte. If I haven't studied literature from that period, there's a very good chance I've not even thought about it since reading the "Weetabix book of History" where the history of the world is explained by sentient Weetabixes dressed in historical costumes.
1950/60s America though, I have a working knowledge of (Thanks mostly to One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, To Kill a Mockingbird, Colour Purple etc). I just think the Civil Rights Movement is facinating. The bravery, solidarity and dignity of absolutely everyone involved in the movement is amazing. In 27 pages this book manages to characterise Rosa Parks and Marthin Luther King Jr thoroughly, signpost some of the crucial events in the Civil Rights movement and tell some of the lesser known incidents too.
I think sometimes it's easy to forget that such law-backed discrimination actually existed so recently, and then you look at what's going off in Switzerland and suddenly it doesn't seem so crazy. I just hope that there will always be people like Rosa around to make people see how stupid laws can sometimes be and that they've got the guts that she did.
Really, really good book, would recommend that every school library has the full set of the Histories series and the Science series. See also Graphic Biographies' book on Harriet Tubman