Books by Barbara Kramer

TONI MORRISON by Barbara Kramer
Released: Sept. 1, 1996

An extremely well-written and powerful entry in the African- American Biographies series about a young girl who became a writer and went on to win the Nobel Prize for literature. Morrison attributes much of her success to her family, who taught her ``that how she felt about herself was not determined by other people.'' Kramer (Amy Tan, p. 746, etc.), in addition to presenting a summary of Morrison's life, explains the themes in all of Morrison's books and discusses Morrison's strengths as a writer: her poetic language, dialogue, and ability to write about villainous characters sympathetically. This book will inspire readers and allow them to see that focus, hard work, and discipline have given Morrison and her work a prominent perch in our literary heritage. (b&w photos, not seen, chronology, notes, bibliography, index) (Nonfiction. 11+) Read full book review >
AMY TAN by Barbara Kramer
Released: June 1, 1996

Kramer (Alice Walker, 1995) describes in a clear narrative Tan's complex personal history, her intricate Chinese-American family story, and above all, her tangled relationship with her mother as the wellsprings for her fiction. She also ties Tan's development as a writer together with her growth and maturity as a person. She includes tales of Tan's rebellious years and early discomfiture with her Chinese heritage that will surely reassure and comfort readers, and will send them to The Joy Luck Club and The Kitchen God's Wife for Tan's own powerful writing. Besides its obvious utility for school reports, this biography in the People to Know series will inspire young people who might be struggling with their own ethnicity and with their own desire to put that struggle into words. (b&w photos, chronology, notes, further reading, index) (Biography. 11+) Read full book review >
ALICE WALKER by Barbara Kramer
Released: Aug. 1, 1995

A deliberate, detailed study of a brilliant, unpredictable, influential writer, in an entry in the People to Know series. Without trying to psychoanalyze her subject, Kramer describes Walker's childhood, family, education, and travels as context for a close look at the author's work: summaries of her novels, selected short stories and poems, brief discussions of common themes, and critical responses pro and con. The making of the movie The Color Purple gets half a chapter as well. There are a few gaps herethe film version of Walker's Finding the Green Stone (1991), which predates the picture book by ten years, is not mentioned, nor is Everyday Use (1994)but readers will come away with a good sense of how Walker thinks and writes, plus a coherent picture of her career. More an alternative to, than a replacement for, Tony Gentry's Alice Walker (1993). (b&w photos, not seen, notes, chronology, bibliography, index) (Biography. 12+) Read full book review >