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My Heart Will Not Sit Downby Mara Rockliff
Synopses & Reviews
When Kedi hears about America's Great Depression from her teacher, her heart will not sit down. Men and women are unable to find work. Children are going hungry. In her teacher's village of New York City, people are starving because they do not have money to buy food. But can one small girl in Africa's Cameroon like Kedi make a difference all the way across the great salt river in America?
Inspired by true events, Mara Rockliff's gorgeous and accessible text matched with Ann Tanksley's vibrant and warm illustrations bring to life the remarkable story of one child's vision, passion, and dedication to make the world a better place.
"Inspired by a true incident, Rockliff's (The Busiest Street in Town) story demonstrates what real generosity looks like. It takes place in a Cameroon village, where an American teacher tells his students that the Great Depression is worsening in his country, 'far away across the great salt river.' His news that children were starving deeply affects Kedi, who knows hunger firsthand, and the girl's 'heart stood up for them in sympathy.' When she asks her mother and other villagers for money to send to America, they respond that they have none to spare, yet Kedi's 'heart would not sit down.' The narrative conveys a keen sense of Kedi's compassion and determination to help, which, as the conclusion proves, is contagious. Rendered in watercolor, pen-and-ink, and oils, Tanksley's (The Six Fools) pared-down, childlike pictures provide a sketch of Cameroon village life, their electric hues of orange, magenta, and scarlet jumping from the pages. An author's note, which puts the story in real-life context and spotlights others who, despite their own need, have aided the hungry, offers a useful springboard for discussion. Agent: Andrea Brown Literary Agency. Ages 5 — 8." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
About the Author
MARA ROCKLIFF's recent books include The Busiest Street in Town (an IndieNext Pick); the Milo & Jazz Mysteries (an ALA Best New Books for the Classroom Pick); and Get Real: What Kind of World Are You Buying? She lives in eastern Pennsylvania with her family.
ANN TANKSLEY is a fine artist who graduated from the Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University). She is the illustrator of the picture book The Six Fools by Zora Neale Hurston, and the creator of a series of monoprints based on the writings of Hurston titled, "Images of Zora," which Maya Angelou described as "dazzling." She lives in Great Neck, New York.
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