Nicholl Denice Montgomery

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Review of Looking for Smoke

Looking for Smoke by K. A. CobellHigh School    Heartdrum/HarperCollins    416 pp.6/24    9780063318670    $19.99e-book ed.  9780063318694    $12.99This page-turning novel set on the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana alternates narration among Mara Racette, Loren Arnoux, Brody Clark, and Eli First Kill, with occasional chapters from the point of view of “unknown.” Rayanne, Loren’s...

Review of The Seventh Direction: A Legend of Creation

The Seventh Direction: A Legend of Creation by Kevin Locke; illus. by Kristy CameronPrimary    Medicine Wheel    48 pp.3/24    9781778540134    $18.95Renowned Indigenous storyteller Locke (Lakota and Anishinabe) provides an engaging retelling of a Lakota legend. Wakȟáŋ Tȟáŋka (the Great Spirit) creates the world in seven days. After sending power to the...

Review of Let’s Go!

Let’s Go! by Julie Flett; illus. by the authorPreschool, Primary    Greystone Kids    40 pp.5/24    9781771646109    $19.95Every day, a child watches other kids skateboarding past the window and wishes to join them. After receiving Mom’s old skateboard, the child can now practice at the skatepark for real. At first unsure about...

Review of Mission One: The Vice Principal Problem

Mission One: The Vice Principal Problem [Blue Stars] by Kekla Magoon and Cynthia Leitich Smith; illus. by Molly Murakami Intermediate, Middle School    Candlewick    176 pp. 3/24    9781536204995    $22.99 Paper ed.  9781536228663    $12.99 e-book ed.  9781536237368    $12.99 In their first graphic novel collaboration, Magoon and Smith introduce readers to cousins Riley...

Review of Bright Red Fruit

Bright Red Fruit by Safia ElhilloHigh School    Make Me a World/Random    384 pp.2/24    9780593381205    $19.99Library ed.  9780593381212    $22.99e-book ed.  9780593381229    $10.99Sixteen-year-old Samira feels restricted by the watchful eyes of her tight-knit Sudanese American community, especially those of her protective mother. The community has labeled her a “bad girl” because of...

Review of American Wings: Chicago’s Pioneering Black Aviators and the Race for Equality in the Sky

  American Wings: Chicago’s Pioneering Black Aviators and the Race for Equality in the Sky by Sherri L. Smith and Elizabeth Wein Middle School, High School    Putnam    384 pp. 1/24    9780593323984    $19.99 e-book ed.  9780593324004    $11.99 Smith (The Blossom and the Firefly, rev. 3/20) and Wein (Stateless, rev. 3/23) introduce readers...

Five questions for Renée Watson and Ekua Holmes

In Black Girl You Are Atlas (Kokila/Penguin, 12–17), Renée Watson insightfully explores Black girlhood and womanhood through poetry encompassing a variety of experiences and influences, with an emphasis on support from other Black women, all accompanied by Ekua Holmes’s stunning collages. National Poetry Month is in April; see also “At...

Review of Yaya and the Sea

Yaya and the Sea by Karen Good Marable; illus. by Tonya EngelPrimary    Millner/Simon    40 pp.3/24    9781534462014    $18.99e-book ed.  9781534462021    $10.99On the first day of spring, Yaya and her mother get up before the sun to go to the sea. Mommy tells Yaya to “pick out the shiniest dimes. We are...

Review of We Could Fly

We Could Fly by Rhiannon Giddens; illus. by Briana Mukodiri UchenduPrimary    Candlewick    32 pp.11/23    9781536222548    $18.99e-book ed. 9781536234619    $18.99A young Black girl notices a sparrow looking at her while she is enjoying time in the park with her mother. The mother tells her daughter, “I see that little birdie there...

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