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Jump At the Sun: The True Life Tale of Unstoppable Storycatcher Zora Neale Hurston



by
Alicia D. Williams
illustrated by
Jacqueline Alcántara

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Simon &
Imprint
Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy
ISBN
9781534419131
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
None
$21.06   $17.55
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From the Newbery Honor–winning author of Genesis Begins Again comes a shimmering picture book that shines the light on Zora Neale Hurston, the extraordinary writer and storycatcher extraordinaire who changed the face of American literature.

Zora was a girl who hankered for tales like bees for honey. Now, her mama always told her that if she wanted something, “to jump at de sun”, because even though you might not land quite that high, at least you’d get off the ground. So Zora jumped from place to place, from the porch of the general store where she listened to folktales, to Howard University, to Harlem. And everywhere she jumped, she shined sunlight on the tales most people hadn’t been bothered to listen to until Zora. The tales no one had written down until Zora. Tales on a whole culture of literature overlooked…until Zora. Until Zora jumped.Author’s note. Further reading. Sources. Full-color illustrations rendered in markers, gouache, and Photoshop.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
None

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

48

Trim Size

11" x 10"

Dewey

B

AR

0: points 0

Genre

Nonfic

Scholastic Reading Counts

0

JLG Release

Mar 2021

Book Genres

Autobiography/Biography, Picture Book

Topics

Zora Neale Hurston (1891–1960). Twentieth-century American authors. Biography. Folklorists. African American authors. Women authors. Southern states. Harlem Renaissance.

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

Horn Book

“In a town called Eatonville…lived a girl who was attracted to tales like mosquitos to skin.” So begins the evocatively descriptive account of the life of acclaimed storyteller Zora Neale Hurston. Young Zora spent the favorite parts of her day at Joe Clarke’s general store, where she would listen to her elders tell fantastical tales of “how that trickster Brer Rabbit always got the best of Brer Fox,” the origin of “squinch owls,” and more. She didn’t mind passing them on, either; perched atop the gatepost that led to her house, Zora would relate those tales—and a few of her own—to any passerby who would listen. While some family members chastised her for “lying,” Zora’s mother encouraged her consistently to “jump at de sun. You might not land on de sun, but at least you’d get off de ground.” These “jumps” carried Zora to Howard University, then on to Harlem (and its burgeoning Renaissance), and right back down to Eatonville, where she continued to do what she did best—trade, tell, and write down stories. Rich with down-home vernacular, the text immerses readers in the Southern tradition of oral storytelling. The illustrations prove just as dynamic, with vibrant spreads bursting with brilliant-toned hues and enjoyable details to notice (e.g., the fashionable hats famously worn by Hurston—modeled by anthropomorphic animals). Snippets of folktales are paneled loosely alongside the biographical story; Brer Rabbit and Brer Fox are no respecters of borders, with both making multiple appearances. Back matter includes an author’s note, sources, and additional reading, for both “Youngins” and “Older Folk.” EBONI NJOKU

Praise & Reviews

Horn Book

“In a town called Eatonville…lived a girl who was attracted to tales like mosquitos to skin.” So begins the evocatively descriptive account of the life of acclaimed storyteller Zora Neale Hurston. Young Zora spent the favorite parts of her day at Joe Clarke’s general store, where she would listen to her elders tell fantastical tales of “how that trickster Brer Rabbit always got the best of Brer Fox,” the origin of “squinch owls,” and more. She didn’t mind passing them on, either; perched atop the gatepost that led to her house, Zora would relate those tales—and a few of her own—to any passerby who would listen. While some family members chastised her for “lying,” Zora’s mother encouraged her consistently to “jump at de sun. You might not land on de sun, but at least you’d get off de ground.” These “jumps” carried Zora to Howard University, then on to Harlem (and its burgeoning Renaissance), and right back down to Eatonville, where she continued to do what she did best—trade, tell, and write down stories. Rich with down-home vernacular, the text immerses readers in the Southern tradition of oral storytelling. The illustrations prove just as dynamic, with vibrant spreads bursting with brilliant-toned hues and enjoyable details to notice (e.g., the fashionable hats famously worn by Hurston—modeled by anthropomorphic animals). Snippets of folktales are paneled loosely alongside the biographical story; Brer Rabbit and Brer Fox are no respecters of borders, with both making multiple appearances. Back matter includes an author’s note, sources, and additional reading, for both “Youngins” and “Older Folk.” EBONI NJOKU

Grades 2-6
Arts Elementary Plus
For Grades 2-6
These art-themed fiction and nonfiction books will foster a love of the arts among elementary readers. Enhance your arts program monthly will 12 books per year in this category.

14 books per Year
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Interests
Biographies,Diversity,Nonfiction,Science/STEAM
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Grades 2-6
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