Take a Picture of Me, James Van Der Zee!
Author: Andrea Loney
Last updated Thursday, May 9, 2019
Illustrator: Keith Mallett
Date of Publication:
Grade Level: 3rd (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Jun. 2019
James Van Der Zee was just a young boy when he saved enough money to buy his first camera. He took photos of his family, classmates, and anyone who would sit still for a portrait. By the fifth grade, James was the school photographer and unofficial town photographer. Eventually he outgrew his small town and moved to the exciting, fast-paced world of New York City. After being told by his boss that no one would want his or her photo taken -by a black man, James opened his own portrait studio in Harlem. He took photographs of legendary figures of the Harlem Renaissance--politicians such as Marcus Garvey, performers including Florence Mills, Bill -Bojangles- Robinson, and Mamie Smith--and ordinary folks in the neighborhood too. Everyone wanted fancy portraits by James Van Der Zee. Winner of Lee & Low's New Voices Award, Take a Picture of Me, James Van Der Zee! tells the story of a groundbreaking artist who chronicled an important era in Harlem and showed the beauty and pride of its people.
|Note to readers: |
Andrea Loney is a long-time Reading to Kids volunteer! TAKE A PICTURE OF ME, JAMES VAN DER ZEE!, her picture book biography, won the 2014 Lee & Low New Voices Award! And it’s illustrated by the magnificent artist Keith Mallett! It’s a Junior Library Guild Fall 2017 Selection and it won the California Reading Association’s 2017 EUREKA! Nonfiction Children’s Gold Award!
Discussion topics: To be posted soon ...
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