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On Rising

Fifty years ago today — April 4, 1968 — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee. Andrea Davis Pinkney’s transcendent Martin Rising: Requiem for a King (Scholastic, 2018), brilliantly illustrated by her husband, Brian Pinkney, honors the civil rights icon’s life and work by shining light on his death. Roger calls the […]

Review of Martin Rising: Requiem for a King

Martin Rising: Requiem for a King by Andrea Davis Pinkney; 
illus. by Brian Pinkney Intermediate, Middle School    Scholastic    128 pp. 1/18    978-0-545-70253-9    $19.99 A creative poetic celebration of the contributions of Martin Luther King Jr. that also, as a song for the dead, includes a meticulous explanation of how and why he died. Henny Penny […]

On Rudine Sims Bishop’s “The Pinkney Family: In the Tradition” (from 1996)

“With their art and their writing, the Pinkneys have enriched American children’s literature by illuminating the experiences of African Americans and of others as well. They are committed to telling the untold stories of African Americans, to making connections across cultures, to demonstrating, as Jerry says, that ‘we as a people are as good as […]

Review of In Your Hands

In Your Hands by Carole Boston Weatherford; illus. by Brian Pinkney Preschool, Primary    Atheneum    32 pp. 9/17    978-1-4814-6293-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-4814-6294-5    $10.99 It looks like a baby-shower book, and it is a baby-shower book — but with a difference. On pastel backgrounds amidst the soft, swirling swoops of Pinkney’s gentle lines and colors, Weatherford […]

BGHB at 50: The Adventures of Sparrowboy

In celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the Boston Globe–Horn Book Awards, established in 1967, we will be publishing a series of appreciations of BGHB winners and honorees from the past. This is the fourth in the series to be published in The Horn Book Magazine (see Gregory Maguire on Jill Paton Walsh’s Unleaving, Tim […]

Review of Let’s Clap, Jump, Sing & Shout; Dance, Spin & Turn It Out!: Games, Songs & Stories from an African American Childhood

Let’s Clap, Jump, Sing & Shout; Dance, Spin & Turn It Out!: Games, Songs & Stories from an African American Childhood by Patricia C. McKissack; illus. by Brian Pinkney Preschool, Primary, Intermediate    Schwartz & Wade/Random    171 pp. 1/17    978-0-375-87088-0    $24.99 Library ed.  978-0-375-97088-7    $27.99    g e-book ed.  978-0-307-97495-2    $12.99 Children’s book royalty and storyteller supreme, […]

The Multi-talented Brian Pinkney

Brian Pinkney’s art was some of the first I saw this year. Busy-Busy Little Chick chirped at me from the booth at ALA last summer, and I was smitten. While Little Chick might not be as sparkly and complicated as some of the other books we have talked about this year, it still is worthy of discussion. […]

The Pinkney Family: In the Tradition

Jerry and Gloria. Brian and Andrea. The Pinkney family is unique in African-American children’s literature, perhaps in all of American children’s literature: four members of the family — two generations, two couples, two artists (one an author-illustrator), two writers — all currently producing award-winning children’s literature. And other family members are in the wings. How […]