Saturday, May 30, 2009

New Crayons: What's New On Our Shelves

Another week to share what new crayons you added to your collection.

From the library, I picked up Aya byMarguerite Abouet and Clement Oubrerie. I've only been reading graphic novels about a year and I really enjoy this genre. Each writer I've read has a distinct style, the graphics have been amazing and the topics covered are diverse and engaging. Saw this at Eva's loot and knowing Eva, I had to pick it up. Set in 1970, Aya follows the travails of some teenage girls in the peaceful Abidjan working-class neighborhood of Yopougon (which they call "Yop City, like something out of an American movie"), as they strive for love and the right boyfriend.

Requested Lucy The Giant by Sherri L. Smith from Paperback Swap because of Doret's review at The HappyNappy Bookseller.For one our assignments for C.O.R.A. Diversity Roll Call assignments we posted about book covers and how readers react to black characters on the cover. This title is about a girl name Lucy who happens to be black, but the story isn't about race but her size and her decision to do a job most girls don't. Looking forward to this.

I learned about Across A Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande by reading an interview with the author at Latino Books Examiner. The story is about a young girl who leaves Mexico to find her father who left two years earlier to find work in America. Looking forward to reading this.

I won Jantsen's Gift by Pam Cope at Bella Is Reading. It's nonfiction and I don't read as much nonfiction as I intend to. Reviews have been mixed so we'll see. For a long time, I even had myself convinced of how good and right everything was in my life. Her ideal was shattered in 1999 when Jantsen, her 15-year-old son, died suddenly from a heart ailment; this moving memoir recounts Cope's transformation and growth after her world collapsed.

I won Paul Robeson, an award winner by Eloise Greenfield at Diversity Rocks! To win at DR, all you have to do is post a link to a review you've written for your blog. How easy is that? I'm a huge Eloise Greenfield. You can read a review at The HappyNappy Bookseller. This a Lee & Low publication. A publisher committed to publishing multicultural literature. Check them out. I received a second bonus title from the publisher, Sacred Mountain Everest by Christine Taylor Butler.

What did you get?


Claudia said...

What did you think about AYA? I am a big fan on that GN, and I recently taught it in a university class.

Color Online said...

Loved it! Going to look for the subsequent volumes. How do it go over in class?

Claudia said...

Sorry for not responding sooner to your question... tonight's my "catch up on my blog reading" night!

My class loved AYA. It was a nice change of pace from more violent, mature comics that we studied. I think they really enjoyed learning more about the Ivory Coast, and seeing that Aya's life was very much like their own.

One issue that caused some debate though: a few students argued that although Abouet's goal was to present a fairly pleasant and carefree life among African teenagers, she ultimately foreshadows the AIDS crisis in Africa by featuring locations like the outdoor "motel", teen pregnancy, and men whose only interest is beer and women. Others insisted that these were simply the normal occurrences of modern life. It was a great conversation.