Cover image for Sunday week
Sunday week
Johnson, Dinah.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Holt, [1999]

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Describes the activities that a community of people engage in all week long as they wait for Sunday, the best day of all.
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Format :


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PIC BK Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



With charm and grace, this celebratory picture book takes young readers through the daily chores and activities of each weekday - from hanging out the wash to jumping Double Dutch - all in anticipation of Sunday. Once this special day finally arrives, it is filled with prayer, song and dance, savory food, storytelling, country drives, and most of all, family warmth and cheer.Dinah Johnson's vibrant, engaging language and Tyrone Geter's handsome illustrations joyfully embrace the faith and spirituality within an African-American community and beyond.

Author Notes

Dinah Johnson is the author of All Around Town: The Photographs of Richard Samuel Roberts , which Booklist called "eloquent" in a boxed review. She is a professor of English and Children's Literature at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. Where Ms. Johnson lives, "Sunday week" means "a week from Sunday." Tyrone Geter has illustrated several books for young readers, including White Socks Only , by Evelyn Coleman, which was an American Bookseller "Pick of the Lists." He lives with his family in Columbia, South Carolina.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 4^-8. The role of church and spirit in the African American community comes alive in Johnson's evocative verse and Geter's sturdy art. Each spread explores a day of the week, leading up to Sunday, when faith, family, and food take center stage. Monday, everybody's got the blues; adults don't want to work, kids don't want to go to school, but Miss Clara says, "One day at a time, / sweet Jesus, / that's all I'm asking from you." On Tuesday, the children jump rope; on Wednesday, some of the people go to church, others to the mosque; Thursday is library day; and Friday, the neighborhood's attention is on the fish stand. On Saturday, all the home work that got shunted to the side gets done. Then it's time for Sunday: church bells, Bible verses, and prayer. "The singers in the choir / lift their arms / and in those robes / they look like they mean it / When they sing / `I'll fly away, fly away home.'" Using charcoal and pastels on colored paper, Geter furnishes street scenes, warm family moments, and, of course, occasions of faith. Many children will find these events comforting and familiar. --Ilene Cooper

Publisher's Weekly Review

"Blue Monday, everybody's got the Monday morning blues," opens Johnson's (All Around Town: The Photographs of Richard Samuel Roberts) impressionistic poem with a gentle cadence, evoking a week in the life of an African-American girl. Each day leading up to Sunday gets a single spread, but "Come Sunday," the most treasured time of the week, eight glorious spreads slow down the pacing, allowing readers to revel in the narrator's favorite rituals. In an opening sketch in charcoal and pastels, Geter (White Socks Only) introduces a beautiful girl with the case of the Monday blahs. As the week progresses, playing jump rope on Tuesday, singing at choir practice on Wednesday, visiting the library story hour on Thursday, Geter shows the heroine's mood improvingÄby Sunday she is beaming. Both Johnson and Geter create a timeless atmosphere for the reverie. Laundry on the line, a shared meal, a Sunday drive against an autumn skyÄall contribute to an atmosphere of family traditions and togetherness. By focusing on the particulars, author and artist strike a universal chord of familial love and the strength of community. Ages 4-7. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

Gr 1-3A day-by-day walk through a week in a rural Southern town as described by a young African-American resident. On Blue Monday, almost everyone has trouble getting started, but Tuesday is just right for double-Dutch practice and Wednesday is reserved for a midweek choir rehearsal. Thursday promises a trip to the library to sit in a circle with Miss Augusta, surrounded by books filled with magic words. An open-air fish fry means its Finally Friday, followed by the endless chores of Work and work some more on Saturday. Blessed Sunday stretches on forever with a biscuit breakfast, long services at Lovely Hill Baptist Church, and a fried chicken and Carolina rice dinner capped off with a lazy drive. What better way for the day to end than with laughter and just one more slice of pie, and stories and memories with the promise of more afternoons like this to come. Using charcoals and pastels on colored paper, ranging from muted gray to bright orange, Geter captures the spirit and emotional fiber of a closely knit, supportive community. This childs-eye view of her loving family and neighbors is shared with universally appealing warmth and insight.Alicia Eames, New York City Public Schools (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.