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ALL AROUND TOWN by Dinah Johnson

ALL AROUND TOWN

The Photographs of Richard Samuel Roberts

By Dinah Johnson

Age Range: 5 - 10

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-8050-5456-1
Publisher: Henry Holt

 A moving album, combining a quiet, questioning text with sepia-toned photographs that self-taught Richard Samuel Roberts took during the 1920s and '30s, in the African-American community of Columbia, South Carolina. Roberts's pictures may have been typical studio portraits of the time, but with the passage of years, and Johnson's comments, they provide a means for readers to travel into the past. Sometimes Johnson asks readers to search the photographs for the story behind those pictured, encouraging inquisitiveness and a form of interaction; other times she offers information (an author's note points out inventions), e.g., for two portraits of the same woman, ``With her apron on this lady was a maid./But without it she was a mother,/the best singer in the choir, a neighbor.'' Text and photographs work a special magic to make the past feel new. (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-10)