YO, JO! by Rachel Isadora
Kirkus Star

YO, JO!

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 2 - 6

KIRKUS REVIEW

While big brother Franklin waits on the stoop for Grandpa to arrive home for dinner, Jomar engages every passer-by in an exuberant exchange of urban slang. “Off the heazy!” “Get jiggy with it!” “Check out the B-boy!” While the lingo may be as foreign to some readers as it is to Grandpa, the infectious good humor of Jo and his multicultural friends in the ’hood comes across effortlessly. Isadora’s evocation of the child in the modern urban landscape reaches back to Ezra Jack Keats, from Jo’s snub-nosed brown profile to the graffiti on the walls (though Jo’s dreadlocks are a distinctly modern touch). Newsprint and other printed papers share the bright collages with streaky oils, the visual cacophony of line and pattern lending the cityscape enormous energy and appeal. These scenes are set against generous white space, the genial dialogue rendered, appropriately enough, in a many-colored HipHop typeface. The depiction of a little boy so thoroughly at home in his community is a delight to see in these suspicious days of stranger danger: Jo is indeed Peter’s direct—and very welcome—descendant. (Picture book. 2-6)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2007
ISBN: 0-15-205783-8
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Harcourt
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2007




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