Friday, February 16, 2018

Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut

Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut. Derrick Barnes. Illustrated by Gordon C. James. 2017. 32 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: When it's your turn in the chair, you stand at attention and forget about who you were when you walked through that door. You came in as a lump of clay, a blank canvas, a slab of marble. But when my man is done with you, they'll want to post you up in a museum! 

Premise/plot: A young boy--a man in the making--talks about the pride and happiness he feels every time he walks into and out of a barber shop. 

My thoughts: This past Monday, Crown got a lot of love on awards day. How much love? A Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor. A Coretta Scott King Author Honor. A Caldecott Honor. A Newbery Honor. I had actually noticed this one at the library on display, picked it up and turned a few pages, and put it back down a few days before. So I can't boast that I knew about the book before it won all the glory.

My recommendation: Before you read a single word of this one, read the author's note. But if you can't help reading it cover-to-cover, at the very least don't skip the author's note. I had never really thought of the picture book format as being a place for a coming-of-age story, but after reading this one, I see that it can be.

Text: 3 out of 5
Illustrations: 3 out of 5
Total: 6 out of 10

© 2018 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

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