Waiting for Pumpsie, the recently released picture book written by Barry Wittenstein and illustrated by London Ladd, tells the story of a young Boston Red Sox fan in the 1950s who earnestly waits for the Red Sox to racially integrate. They were the last major league baseball team in the United States to do so, but with the arrival of promising new player Pumpsie Green, the time has finally come. Kirkus gave Pumpsie a starred review! They praised the historically accurate portrayal of 1950s Boston and baseball and the “earnest, joyous voice” of the narrator. They wrote of the illustrations, “Ladd’s wonderfully detailed acrylic-and–colored pencil illustrations powerfully and beautifully complement and enhance the events.” They conclude that Waiting for Pumpsie is, “innocent, aware, and endlessly hopeful and will win readers hearts. A grand slam.” Kirkus’s full review is available on their site here. You can purchase Waiting for Pumpsie online here.
Michael Slack‘s tale of a courageous turtle who doubles as a tugboat and rescue vehicle, Turtle Tug, has been pulling praise and positive reviews! The newest review comes from the School Library Journal. They call the picture book, “the right combination of fun and sincerity,” and praise Michael’s narration and illustration. They write, “The nail-biting narrative chugs effortlessly alongside Slack’s bright and bold digital artwork.” Turtle Tug will be available for purchase as of March 21st. Until then, you can pre-order it online here.
Waiting for Pumpsie, written by Barry Wittenstein and illustrated by London Ladd, is available for purchase as of today! The picture book tells the story of a young boy, Bernard, living in Boston in the 1950s, and his dream that the Boston Red Sox will draft an African American player. Twelve years after Jackie Robinson broke the color barrier, the Red Sox at last added Pumpsie Green to their team, making them the last major league team to integrate. Just in time for the book’s release, a new review of Waiting for Pumpsie is available from the Fenway News newspaper. The Fenway News praises the book’s portrayal of an important civil rights event and its ode to baseball in the 50s. They write, “The book is half-criticism, half-ode. London Ladd’s illustrations Fenway as it was in the 1950s.” You can order Waiting for Pumpsie online here.
Canadian animation company Nelvana has announced that, in association with Kids Can Press, they will begin producing an animated short based on Ashley Spires‘s bestselling picture book The Most Magnificent Thing. The short is currently in pre-production. The Most Magnificent Thing tells of a young girl’s trial and error attempts to create the most magnificent thing ever, and has been praised for its portrayal of the creative process and its message of perseverance and hard work. Ashley is excited by the short, saying, “There can never be enough opportunities to present young female characters as empowered, inventive problem-solvers to inspire children…I can’t wait to see the final product.” Keep an eye out for this exciting new short! You can find out more information about the film here.
Coming out soon, Jordan Peele’s Get Out is a horror movie that depicts what happens when a young black man meets his white girlfriend’s family for the first time. Vanity Fair recently published an article on the movie, in which they interview Peele and reveal exclusive promotional art inspired by the movie. One of the paintings featured in the article is by Frank Morrison! Vanity Fair describes the paintings as “vibrant.” Frank’s painting is to the left, but to read the full article and see all the exclusive paintings, check out the article here.
The New York Times recently published an article entitled “Five Iconic African-American Biographies for Kids.” Three out of five of these recommended picture books were written and/or illustrated by artists from Painted Words! The recommended titles included Muhammad Ali: A Champion is Born, The Legendary Miss Lena Horne, and The Youngest Marcher. Muhammad Ali, written by Gene Barretta and illustrated by Frank Morrison, tells the story of the incident that set a young Ali (then called Cassius Clay) onto his boxing career. Times described it as a, “playful, dynamic look at the champion’s quest for greatness.” They praised Frank for “[giving] the art a joyful zing and a serious yet eminently kid-friendly vibe.” Muhammad Ali can be purchased here. The Legendary Miss Lena Horne, written by Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrated by Liz Zunon, is the biography of actress, singer, and civil rights activist Lena Horne. The New York Times writes, “The book’s sizzling clarity recalls Horne’s own voice,” and praises Liz’s illustrations, writing, “Zunon…plays with shadow and light to suggest the hidden depths of a very public life.” The Legendary Miss Lena Horne can be purchased here. The Youngest Marcher, written by Cynthia Levinson and illustrated by Vanessa Brantley Newton, reveals the story of Audrey Faye […]