Cover image for Josephine : the dazzling life of Josephine Baker
Title:
Josephine : the dazzling life of Josephine Baker
Author:
Powell, Patricia Hruby, 1951-
Publication Information:
San Francisco : Chronicle Books, [2014]
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 27 cm
Summary:
A portrait of the passionate performer and civil rights advocate Josephine Baker, the woman who worked her way from the slums of St. Louis to the grandest stages in the world. Meticulously researched by both author and artist, Josephine's powerful story of struggle and triumph is an inspiration and a spectacle, just like the legend herself.
Language:
English
Reading Level:
790 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.6 1.0 160655.

Reading Counts RC 3-5 5.2 4 Quiz: 61378.
Geographic Term:
Added Author:
ISBN:
9781452103143
Format :
Book

Available:*

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Central Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
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Central Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Childrens Area-Black History
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Audubon Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Clarence Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Crane Branch Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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East Delavan Branch Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Eggertsville-Snyder Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Hamburg Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Kenmore Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Lackawanna Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Lancaster Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Frank E. Merriweather Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Newstead Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Niagara Branch Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Orchard Park Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Julia Boyer Reinstein Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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City of Tonawanda Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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Clearfield Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Anna M. Reinstein Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Biography
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Kenilworth Library GV1785.B3 P68 2014 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
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On Order

Summary

Summary

Coretta Scott King Book Award, Illustrator, Honor
Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award, Honor
Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, Nonfiction Honor
Parent's Choice Award
Wall Street Journal's 10 Best Children's Books of the Year List
Bologna Ragazzi Nonfiction Honor 2014

In exuberant verse and stirring pictures, Patricia Hruby Powell and Christian Robinson create an extraordinary portrait for young people of the passionate performer and civil rights advocate Josephine Baker, the woman who worked her way from the slums of St. Louis to the grandest stages in the world. Meticulously researched by both author and artist, Josephine's powerful story of struggle and triumph is an inspiration and a spectacle, just like the legend herself.


Author Notes

Patricia Hruby Powell danced throughout the Americas and Europe with her dance company, One Plus One, before becoming a writer of children's books. She lives in Champaign, Illinois.

Christian Robinson, formerly at Pixar Studios and Sesame Street Workshop, lives in San Francisco.


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Josephine is a free-verse biographical poem that pulls its inspiration from the life of a fascinating performer and civil rights pioneer. Josephine Baker grew up in the shantytowns of St. Louis, often considered the home of ragtime music. At only 13, she left home to travel with a dance troupe, honing her silly on-stage persona and earning pennies. Through a series of unlikely but fortunate events, her talent was discovered and soon she was dancing the Charleston on a stage in Paris. While most of the milestones of her notorious career and turbulent life are included, Powell focuses on events that carried the most personal weight for Baker, such as almost losing her leg in a childhood accident, her refusal to dance in segregated American dance halls, and her first time on a transatlantic boat trip. Quotes from Baker punctuate the engaging narrative poem and Robinson's gorgeous, colorful acrylics (with cute Lego-faced characters) honor the colorful exuberance of both the Jazz era and Baker's life. Well researched and spirited, this features innumerable points of discussion for young readers.--Anderson, Erin Copyright 2014 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

Segregated American clubs were willing to let African-American dancer Josephine Baker (1906-1975) perform, but they wouldn't let her use the front door. Powell (Frog Brings Rain) chooses a potent metaphor for Baker's hidden anger: "hot magma, molten lava, trapped within." When Baker arrived in France, the country embraced both her artistry and her blackness, and "Her deep volcanic core-filled with emotion, filled with music-erupted." Robinson (Rain!) draws round faces gazing with amazement at the woman onstage whose pearl necklace flies one way and whose hips swing the other. Baker's entire life spreads out in this tapestry of words, from a St. Louis childhood surrounded by music to her triumphs all over Europe-followed, sadly, by debt and illness. Robinson's naif, folk-style figures look like puppets, and make some grim moments easier to endure ("Those ugly rumors incited some white folks/ to beat, murder, and burn black East St. Louis"). Although Powell's focus is on Baker, the contrast between segregated America and welcoming France will not be lost on readers. Ages 7-10. Author's agent: Anna Olswanger, Liza Dawson Associates. Illustrator's agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-8-This charming biography invites readers to step inside the vibrant and spirited world of performer and civil rights advocate, Josephine Baker. Robinson's paintings are as colorful and rich as Josephine Baker's story, offering page after page of captivating and animated illustrations and rhythmic text, which is written in blank verse. In a few short and well-organized parts, readers learn the story of one of the world's most well known female performers who danced and sang her way from the poor and segregated streets of St. Louis to the dazzling stages of Paris all the way to Carnegie Hall. Text and illustrations work in tandem to accurately document Josephine's extraordinary life and the era in which she lived. Clear and lively descriptions of Josephine's story play out creatively in the text, introducing readers to basic principles of poetic structure in storytelling and offering an accurate portrait of a woman who fought for racial equality and civil rights through her life's passion: performance. Reluctant readers of nonfiction and poetry lovers alike will be drawn to this book's musical, theatrical nature, making for a fun, enriching, and holistic reading experience. This unique and creative work is a first purchase.-Natalie Braham, Denver Public Library (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


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