Book: Bronzeville Boys and Girls

Life in Bronzeville
As seen by a child
34 voices to help us remember
34 ways to make us smile

Note: I met Pulitzer-Prize winner Gwendolyn Brooks when she gave a reading at the Naperville Public Library. I was the only black in a sea of white, and when my mom proudly announced to her that I wanted to be a writer when I grew up, Ms. Brooks reached into her bag and gave me her copy of Blacks, which has sat on my nightstand for the last 15 years.

Bronzeville, first published in 1956, feels as fresh last night when Nick and I read it as it must have 40 years ago. The themes are universal (e.g. staying home sick from school, going outside to play when “grown folks” come over, staging a tea party) and the pictures by Caldecott-honored artist Faith Ringgold are simply beautiful.

Bonus: Listen to an interview with Ms. Brooks here.


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