Momma, Where Are You From?

Marie Bradby

Published by Orchard, 2000
ISBN 10: 0531301052 / ISBN 13: 9780531301050
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Synopsis: "In this lyrical picture book, an African American mother tells her young daughter about growing up in the rural South in a time long ago.... Bradby tells of the good times with and love in every word, while Soentpiet bathes the remembered scenes in a golden light." - Kirkus Reviews

From School Library Journal: Kindergarten-Grade 3-In answer to her daughter's question, "Momma, where are you from?," a woman answers indirectly by poetically evoking her own happily remembered childhood: "I'm from Monday mornings, washing loads of clothes in the wringer washer-." Soentpiet's bold, realistic watercolors depict small-town African-American life in what appears to be the '40s or '50s. They match the mother's strong recollections of greeting the neighbors, ice-man, or fish-man; helping out with ironing and food preparation; and gathering in the evening for fish fries and dancing to old Duke Ellington and Count Basie records. However, these memories also include the school bus taking her brothers and sisters way across town to schools "where all the children were brown-some light, some dark, some in-between," and living just past where the sidewalk ended. Glowing in her mother's smile, the little girl asks if she can go there and is assured that they can travel in memories any time. While the time period of the mother's childhood is unspecified but clearly not contemporary, the family's love is always in evidence. In the illustrations, people's faces radiate light and joy, and the interiors and clothing are rendered with loving detail. This one's a keeper.
Susan Hepler, Burgundy Farm Country Day School, Alexandria, VA
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Title: Momma, Where Are You From?
Publisher: Orchard
Publication Date: 2000
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: Used: Good

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