Books by Linda Lowery

BIOGRAPHY
Released: Dec. 17, 2002

The story of Aunt Clara Brown deserves to be better known. As Patricia McKissack writes in the introduction, Aunt Clara Brown was "a classic American hero." Born a slave, probably in 1800 in Virginia, Clara was sold with her mother to a farmer named Ambrose Smith. In 1809, the Smith family moved west to Kentucky by covered wagon over the Wilderness Road. Eventually, Clara purchased her freedom, moved to St. Louis, and later to Colorado in the Colorado Gold Rush of 1849. Always she searched for her daughter, Eliza Jane, sold on the auction block, stolen from her life. When the Civil War ended, Clara returned to the South to look for her daughter and, instead, found a new "family" of dispossessed former slaves and settled them in Colorado. At the end of her life, Clara was reunited with Eliza Jane, after 46 years and 5,000 miles of traveling and searching, "a million tears, a lifetime of faith that one day, despite all odds, this very moment would come to pass." This entry in the newly reinvigorated Landmark series is lively, well written, and full of historical detail, an impassioned account of racism faced and transcended. Each chapter is followed by information on such historical events such as the Dred Scott Case, the Underground Railroad, the Missouri Compromise, and the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Readers will come to care about Clara Brown and learn much about the times in which she lived. A fine work for biography fans and a necessity for American history collections. (introduction, author's note, notes on research, bibliography, acknowledgments, photo credits, index) (Nonfiction. 9+)Read full book review >
PABLO PICASSO by Linda Lowery
Released: Nov. 30, 1999

paper 1-57505-370-5 In this valuable addition to the On My Own Biography series of easy readers, Lowery (Georgia O'Keeffe, 1996, etc.) renders an intriguing and lucid portrait of the man often referred to as the most celebrated artist of the 20th century. The book begins with young Picasso puzzling over math equations. Finding math difficult, he came up with an inventive alternative, swirling and bending numbers on the page until they became fanciful creations. As a boy, Picasso was often sent to a "cell" as punishment for his lack of academic focus, but there he found the long hours nothing but pleasant, doing just what he loved best, "drawing, drawing, drawing." This book takes readers on a journey through the highlights of Picasso's life, visiting his Blue Period, his Rose Period and lingering over cubism. Lowery also makes clear Picasso's mercurial and tempestuous nature, describing his swings from flamboyant rage to ecstatic joy. She aptly demonstrates how Picasso's art became an expression of his character and his character an extension of his art. In pleasing textures of oil on canvas and warm hues, Porter's accompanying illustrations quite nicely echo the art of its subject. (photos, chronology) (Biography. 8-11) Read full book review >
GEORGIA O'KEEFFE by Linda Lowery
BIOGRAPHY
Released: July 1, 1996

One of America's most popular artists is introduced for early readers in the On My Own Biographies series. Lowery (Laurie Tells, 1994, etc.) does well in presenting O'Keeffe in simple language that captures the feelings of self- doubt and courage that were requisite for the young artist to break away from accepted styles and paint what was in her head. The book opens with O'Keeffe's staring at the stark desert of New Mexico, then flashes back to her earlier life as an art teacher. Her childhood in Wisconsin is covered only in an entry in the chronology. Her rather extraordinary marriage to Alfred Stiegletz is dealt with in a few brief sentences, although the scene in which he encounters O'Keeffe's abstract work for the first time is given strong dramatic weight (it launched her career as an artist). It is not easy to write simply well, but Lowery makes this a literary experience as well as a learning one. Newcomer Draper's illustrations portray the story of the woman well, admirably attempting renderings of O'Keeffe's best-known works in the backgrounds. Still, it's always a disappointment when no reproductions of an artist's work are included; this book has only a small black-and-white photo of O'Keeffe in front of one of her skull paintings at the end. (chronology) (Biography. 5-9) Read full book review >
TWIST WITH A BURGER, JITTER WITH A BUG by Linda Lowery
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 1, 1995

Lowery (Laurie Tells, 1994, etc.) folds a drumbeat into her book about all kinds of high-stepping. The seven huffing-and- puffing lines featuring dance words all conform to the same rhythmic pattern: ``Boogie in the bathtub,/hula-hula dance,/Rumba if you wanna in your underpants.'' This patternin which the first line in the rhyme is broken into two short phrases, while the second line is kept longis the beloved form of rap. These rhymes, packed with spondees, demand a hearing out loud, with the emphasis on ``loud.'' Last seen in Christine Loomis's One Cow Coughs (1994), Dypold's illustrationsbright and colorful cut-paper collages on a white backgroundare daringly decentered in compositions that capture gestures rather than details and never fall out of step with the rhymes. Others have filled the pages with dance verbs and demonstrations; this particular treatment is modern and original. (Picture book. 4-7) Read full book review >
LAURIE TELLS by Linda Lowery
CHILDREN'S
Released: May 2, 1994

``It's hard to believe/how happy I used to be....I have places on my body/I don't want anyone to touch./They're mine, only for me,/and it makes me sick/to think he touched me there.'' A sexually abused 11-year-old shares her emotions, remembering how she trusted and loved Dad when she was little, her horror when he first molested her two years ago, her one tentative attempt to tell Mom, who refused to believe her. In despair, Laurie considers other adults she might confide in (``he likes my father....I don't think I can trust him''; ``she's too nice and happy to ever believe...''), settling on Aunt Jan, who's ``never been afraid of my dad, even when they were kids.'' Her aunt's response is exemplary: loving and efficient. Realistically, she doesn't know all the answers, but she does know how to begin, by offering comfort, refuge, and help in finding the next step. Karpinski's watercolor vignettes reflect Laurie's feelings with admirable sensitivity. Thoughtful and carefully wrought, a valuable aid to coping and understanding. (Fiction. 8-12) Read full book review >
CHILDREN'S
Released: April 22, 1993

One of three pictorial introductions to environmental problems that present useful project ideas and inspire stories of ``kids in action,'' along with conveying the usual horrors of pollution and destruction. Focusing on global problems, this volume touches on air and water pollution, tree conservation, solid waste problems, and children's activism. The projects aren't detailed; readers are invited to contact organizations for more information. Though the authors are unabashed environmentalists, they encourage letter-writers to research all sides of a question. Topic overviews are in simpler language and larger type than captions and accounts of specific problems. An attractive, well-bound book on recycled, acid-free paper with color photos and cartoonish illustrations featuring a multicultural cast and concluding with an excellent outline for an ``Earthwise Action Plan'' to guide readers in creating their own projects. Not enough information for in-depth reports, but- -like Earthwise at Play (wildlife) and Earthwise at Home (household ecology)—good for stimulating interest while pointing readers to more specific sources. (Nonfiction. 6-9) Read full book review >