Books by Jerry Butler

Released: Dec. 1, 1996

This stylish survey places African-American writers in a social and political framework. The approach is lively: An elderly man tells his granddaughter about the literature and history of their people, his voice folksy and idiomatic (he joined in the genealogy craze launched by Alex Haley's Roots: ``I tickle myself sometimes just thinking about it''). For the most part, the voice of this five-chapter book works, blending well with the personal tone of reprinted snippets from pieces by well- known writers (Maya Angelou, Nikki Giovanni, and others) and allowing for a nicely shaped ending: The old man turns over the telling to his granddaughter, asking her to make stories he can carry around in his pocket. Butler's illustrations, in full- spread paintings resembling murals and incorporated with historical photographs and portraits, vibrantly wrap the book together. (glossary, further reading) (Nonfiction. 8+) Read full book review >