Sunday, July 18, 2010

New Crayons

New Crayons is a metaphor for multicultural lit. The excitement of getting a new book is kind of like the excitement felt as a child opening a new box of crayons. I got three children's titles to start the week out.

She Sang Promise: The Story of Betty Mae Jumper, Seminole Tribal Leader by JG Annino
She Sang Promise is the compelling and inspiring story of Betty Mae Tiger Jumper, one of modern Americas first female elected tribal leader. With its lyrical, poetic text, and rich, vibrant illustration, this is a book to charm and amaze young readers.

The Other Half of My Heart by Sundee Tucker Frazier
The close relationship of a pair of biracial twins is tested when their grandmother enters them in a pageant for African American girls in this new story from Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award winner Sundee T. Frazier

Finding My Place by Traci L. Jones
"Fourteen-year-old Tiphanie Baker's parents, former civil rights activists, are 'big on doing their part to uplift the race' and firmly expect Tiphanie to do the same. In the fall of 1975, she leaves her comfortable neighborhood and moves to a nearly all-white school in Denver's suburbs, where she 'never felt so Black--and so friendless--in my entire life.' While her parents revel in their prestigious new jobs, Tiphanie becomes an object of curiosity and animosity at school, until another outcast, Jackie Sue (self-described 'walking talking trailer trash') befriends her.

So as not to neglect adult fiction here are two titles, I will be adding to my new crayons box very soon.

The Invisible Mountain by Carolina Robertis - I wanted to read this one in hardcover but missed it. It got great reviews.

"The history of Uruguay through the 20th century sparks personal tragedies amid political intrigues and cultural upheavals in this enchanting, funny and heartbreaking debut novel. Three generations of women populate this sweeping saga: Pajarita, the miracle child who at the dawn of the new century disappears and then reappears in a tree, born twice, as the residents of her small town say; Eva, Pajarita's daughter, who suffers a cruel childhood and learns to spin her painful experiences into a new life of art and adventure as a poet; and Salom, seduced by communism and nearly losing everything fighting for the cause she believes will save her country. This novel is beautifully written yet deliberate in its storytelling. It gains momentum as the women's lives spin increasingly out of control while Uruguay sinks into war, economic instability and revolution. An extraordinary first effort whose epic scope and deft handling reverberate with the deep pull of ancestry, the powerful influence of one's country and the sacrifices of reinvention." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

Half Life by Roopa Farooki

I loved the author's debut Bitter Sweets and this sounds really good.
"In this compelling tale, novelist Farooki follows Bengali doctor Aruna Ahmed Jones, who has impulsively married a British physician, hoping to forget a tragic romance with her old friend Ejaz 'Jazz' Ahsan, who she left behind in Singapore's Little India. A recovering drug addict, Aruna has suffered from bipolar disorder and had a string of miscarriages during her time with Jazz, leaving her in a delicate state of mind; inspired by a letter from Jazz's adopted dad, who, in a parallel plot, is dying in a hospital in Malaysia, Aruna decides to leave her husband and return to Singapore to face Jazz and the terrible news that tore them apart. Farooki's hypnotic narrative is driven by a delicate, probing intensity, full of grace and poignancy." Publishers Weekly All summaries and reviews are from What new crayons did you get this week?


middle grade ninja said...

What a wonderful blog. So happy to have found you. I'm a white male, but I love multicutural fiction for children. Keep up the great work!

Doret said...

Middle Grade Ninja - I am glad you found us too. Welcome

Ardene said...

Hope you enjoy The invisible mountain. I liked it a lot.

Recently ordered Sweet dates in Basra, set in Iraq in the 1940s, the story of a Muslim girl sent to work in Basra. She meets a Jewish boy who lives next door with his family.

In addition, I'm getting a collection of short stories set in Zimbabwe, Elegy for Easterly.