Synopses & Reviews
What if you loved music more than anything? Suppose you had just learned to play the piano. Imagine that your family has to move to a new city and you have to leave your piano behind.and#160;People donandrsquo;t like you in the new cityand#160;because ofand#160; what you look like. How will you make yourself feel better? Mary Lou Williams, like Mozart, began playing theand#160;piano when she was four; at eight she became a professional musician.and#160;She wrote and arranged music for Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie, and was one of the most powerful women inand#160;jazz. This is the story of Mary Lou's childhood in Pittsburgh, where she played the piano for anyone who would listen.
"This biography of Billie Holiday (1915 1959) is as much a study of her dogs as of the singer. And there were a lot of them. 'The Chihuahuas, Chiquita and Pepe, she fed with a baby bottle,' writes Novesky. 'There was the Great Dane named Gypsy and the wire-haired terrier Bessie Mae Moocho,' and more. Lady Day's favorite was her boxer, Mister, and this story's drama centers around whether Mister will be there for Holiday after 'she had to leave home for a year and a day' (endnotes explain that this was due to a conviction for drug possession). Newton's illustrations neatly incorporate sheet music, photographic elements, and period ephemera, and both text and art capture the sweet bond between Holiday and her beloved animals. Ages 4 8. Author's agent: Caryn Wiseman, Andrea Brown Literary Agency. Illustrator's agent: Lori Nowicki, Painted Words. (June)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"True to Billie Holiday's life and music, the rhythmic free verse and bright pictures mix joy and melancholy in this picture-book introduction to the great blues singer, known as Lady Day."
"By highlighting Lady Day's affectionate relationship with Mister, Novesky and Newton invite readers to admire the illustrious singer in a sparkling new light."
"This introduction to the jazz great has tons of kid appeal."
and#8212;School Library Journal
"Both text and art capture the sweet bond between Holiday and her beloved animals."
andquot;The paintingsand#39; rich colors and simplified, often rhythmically repeated forms suit the story well. A lyrical tribute to the childhood of a folk legend.andquot;
andquot;A cadenced narrative and soft watercolors in a naandiuml;ve style take readers through blind folk musician Arthel andldquo;Docandrdquo; Watsonandrsquo;s Appalachian upbringing.andquot;
andquot;Uncluttered watercolor illustrations add to the spare text, which stresses Watsonand#39;s joyful exploration of the sounds of his world...this enchanting introduction to a legendary musician is perfect for most biography collections.andquot;
andmdash;School Library Journal
andquot;Gourleyand#39;s affectionate biography is a great starting point for young readers, who are most likely unfamiliar with Doc Watson.andquot;
andmdash;Horn Book Magazine
andquot;Acknowledging Mary's long, worldwide career as an elegant, accomplished performer andquot;in beautiful shoes,andquot; this sweet tribute neatly fills a niche in the panoply of titles about jazz greats.andquot;andmdash;Kirkus
andquot;Potter's naive, doll-like figures, poised in their slightly tipsy, extravagantly patterned domestic settings, recall the mannered portraiture of the colonial period. With a steadily growing collection of picture books on jazz greats now available for the storytime set, it's nice to see a strong female musician take her place on the shelves.andquot;andmdash;Bulletin
Did you know that American jazz singer Billie Holiday was crazy about dogs?
Billie Holidayand#8212;also known as Lady Dayand#8212;had fame, style, a stellar voice, big gardenias in her hair, and lots of dogs. She had a coat-pocket poodle, a beagle, Chihuahuas, a Great Dane, and more, but her favorite was a boxer named Mister. Mister was always there to bolster her courage through good times and bad, even before her legendary appearance at New Yorkand#8217;s Carnegie Hall. Newtonand#8217;s stylish illustrations keep the simply told story focused on the loving bond between Billie Holiday and her treasured boxer. An authorand#8217;s note deals more directly with the singerand#8217;s troubled life, and includes a little-known photo of Mister and Lady Day!
As she did with Edna Lewis in Bring Me Some Apples and I'll Make You a Pie
, Robbin Gourley tells a story about the early life of Doc Watson (1923-2012), a blind musician from North Carolina who won 7 Grammy Awards and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award andand#160;had a deep, enduring influence on how the flattop acoustic guitar is used in folk, roots, and bluegrass music.
Arthel andquot;Docandquot; Watson (1923andndash;2012)and#160;was a Grammy-winning guitarist, singer, and songwriter, high in the pantheon of bluegrass and country music greats. This picture book tells the story of a country boy, born blind, who found music in the sounds around him and learned to play that music on his guitar. Minimal text and breathtaking illustrations pay tribute to Docand#39;s early determination, imagination, and musicianship. Includes additional biographical information.and#160;
In this first-ever illustrated picture book biography of the famous gymnast Nadia, debut author Karlin Gray traces Nadia Comaneciand#39;s journey from a small-town Romanian girl who did cartwheels in the schoolyard to five-time Olympic Gold Medalist and one of the most talented and respected athletes in the world.
About the Author
As a little girl, Karlin Gray loved gymnastics but she wasnand#39;t feisty, fearless, or focused like Nadia Comaneci. Karlin had no problem sitting still . . . daydreaming and, eventually, writing. After working several years in publishing, she sat down and wrote her first picture book, Nadia: The Girl Who Couldnandrsquo;t Sit Still. Karlin lives in Connecticut with her husband, son, and a very bouncy dog.Christine Davenier lives in Paris. She has also illustrated the Very Fairy Princess books by actress Julie Andrews and her daughter Emma Walton Hamilton. andnbsp; andnbsp;