A new collection of poetry by Nikki Grimes, One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance, re-examines great poetry from the Harlem Renaissance by combining it with her own poetry. The beautiful new picture book features art from modern African American illustrators – including our own Frank Morrison, Shadra Strickland, and Liz Zunon. One Last Word has just been released and is now available for purchase! One Last Word can be purchased online here.
The Children’s Book Council published a list of books it calls “Hot Off the Press,” a collection recently released and forthcoming picture books that they anticipate becoming bestsellers, and four of our authors/illustrators had books included on this list! In the Featured Books section is forthcoming The Legendary Miss Lena Horne, written by Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrated by Liz Zunon. The Legendary Miss Lena Horne tells the story of pioneering actress, singer, and civil rights activist Lena Horne. The picture book will be published later this month and can be pre-ordered online here. In the More Titles section is The Youngest Marcher, written by Cynthia Levinson and illustrated by Vanessa Brantley Newton. The Youngest Marcher is based on the true story of Audrey Faye, the youngest marcher to be arrested in the Birmingham civil rights protests. It comes out later this month and can be ordered online here. Also included in this section is Muhammad Ali: A Champion is Born, written by Gene Barretta and illustrated by Frank Morrison. Muhammad Ali is the story of how the famous heavyweight boxer first got his start in boxing. This picture book was released today! It can be ordered online here. Make sure to keep an eye on these […]
Muhammad Ali: A Champion is Born, written by Gene Barretta and illustrated by Frank Morrison, is out today! This new picture book tells the story of the heavyweight champion’s childhood and how he first began to box. The New York Journal of Books wrote an amazing review of Muhammad Ali, praising the story, illustrations, and interesting depiction of Ali before he began his career. They call the picture book, “lovely beyond words,” and praise Gene’s writing as “fast-paced, realistic, and touching on an elemental level.” Of Frank’s illustrations, they write, “Award-winning artist Frank Morrison handles the illustrations with dignity and flare…Morrison captures the very essence of what made Cassius ‘Ali.'” To read the whole review, follow this link to their site. You can order Muhammad Ali online here.
Forthcoming picture book, Thunder Underground, is a collection of poems written by Jane Yolen and illustrated by Josée Masse detailing the various activities and objects that exist underground, ranging from buried treasure to burrowing creatures to the subway. Booklist recently wrote a great advance review of the picture book. They describe Thunder Underground as a “thoughtful collection” and praised Yolen’s “vivid” poems. They wrote of Josée’s illustrations that, “Masse’s drawings of a boy and girl tell stories on their own…The warm, naturalistic illustrations of underground scenes and cutaways often contain an element of charming whimsy.” Thunder Underground comes out in March of 2017. You can order it online here.
Elise Gravel‘s newest book, Olga and the Smelly Thing from Nowhere, tells the story of an aspiring scientist, Olga, who loves animal and longs to be a zoologist. One day she discovers a mysterious, smelly creature and sets out to discover whether it’s an entirely new, undiscovered animal species. This hilarious book comes out in March of this year, and it already has a great advance review from Booklist! Booklist praises Elise’s, “hilarious comics-style illustrations,” and the equally funny dialogue and narration, which often takes the form of scientific observations. Booklist writes that, “This laugh-out-loud book is a perfect pick for transitioning readers with a penchant for silly stories.” Olga and the Smelly Thing from Nowhere comes out in the spring, but for those who can’t wait, you can pre-order it online here.
As 2016 comes to a close, it’s time for Best Books of the Year lists! Huffington Post recently published their list of the Best Picture Books of 2016, including two of our author/illustrators as honorable mentions. In the Best Concept Book Category, Il Sung Na‘s The Opposite Zoo, which illustrated the concept of opposites through the medium of a zoo at night, was included as an honorable mention. In the Best Poetry category was Echo Echo: Reverso Poems About Greek Myths, written by Marilyn Singer and illustrated by Josée Masse, which retold Greek myths through a unique poetic form. Congratulations, Il Sung and Josée! The Huffington Post’s full article can be read here. The Opposite Zoo can be purchased online here and Echo Echo can be purchased here.