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My Block Looks Like

Illustrated by Frank Morrison
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A love letter to the hustle, the bustle, the joy, and the grit of city life by debut author and Bronx native, Janelle Harper, and two-time Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winner, Frank Morrison.

"My block looks like
a collision of cultures
a melting pot of cool
a burst of life
my favorite groove

. . .No matter what happens
I’ve seen it for myself
my block looks like
the coolest place
I’ve ever been."

A lyrical and proud picture book that recognizes the beauty of the bodegas, subways, and playgrounds that characterize everyday life in the Bronx and pays homage to the ways that its residents have shaped pop culture through music, visual art, and dance. Perfect for fans of I Am Every Good Thing and Last Stop on Market Street, My Block Looks Like offers kids a reaffirming message to celebrate and uplift their communities in an energetic text that begs to be read aloud.
Janelle Harper is a Bronx native whoproudly carries her New York accent anywhereshe goes. She finds inspiration in city living and the diverse experiences of the African Diaspora.When she is not enjoying the hidden gems of the Bronx, she is traveling and exploring new cultures. She is a proud veteran public school teacher who comes from a long line ofeducators. She is passionate about creating stories that reflect the children in her Bronx classroom and neighborhood. When she’s not thinking about her next book, Janelle can often be found in her dance studio, blasting music, yelling “five-six-seven-eight,” and preparing elaborate student productions. Visit her online at JanelleHarperAuthor.com.

Frank started his journey as a graffiti artist in New Jersey, tagging walls with spray paint. It wasn’t until he visited the Louvre Museum in Paris with his dancing group that he realized painting was his true creative path. His work has been featured at Art Basel, SCOPE Art Show, and Red Dot Miami art fair, and shown at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City and the Mason Fine Art gallery  in Atlanta, Georgia. He is the illustrator of over twenty children’s books, including the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winners Standing in the Need of Prayer and R-E-S-P-E-C-T, the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award winner Jazzy Miz Mozetta, and the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor books Little Melba and Her Big Trombone and Let the Children March. Frank was a Society of Illustrators’ Original Art Silver Medal Honoree two years in a row, for The Roots of Rap and R-E-S-P-E-C-T. His debut author-illustrated picture book is Kick Push. Visit himonline at MorrisonGraphics.com.
Praise for My Block Looks Like by Janelle Harper and Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winner, Frank Morrison:

*"[V]ibrant . . . Morrison’s illustrations provide rich sensory detail and energy to support the narrator’s observations . . . At the same time, words and images work collectively to challenge readers to slow down and pay attention to the wonders of city life that are easy to misunderstand or dismiss . . . Harper’s block (she hails from the Bronx) is alive, aptly called "my soul," and supported by Morrison’s images and warm colors, a refreshing invitation to visit or imagine this vivid, memorable place." --Horn Book, starred review

*"The artist’s careful attention to detail and the shifting visual perspectives in action scenes bring Harper’s musical text to life. The narrator argues convincingly for the Bronx as 'the coolest place I’ve ever been,' where 'dreams rise higher than the smog' and neighbors 'sparkle under streetlamps.' A culturally rich and beautifully illustrated child’s-eye view of home." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

*"Kinetic, portrait-filled art from Morrison (Breaking to the Beat!) reveals theneighborhood’s sights (double Dutch, the Icee man, pickup games), vibrantly conveying the essence ofthe protagonist’s home: “my city/ my hood/ my block. My home/ my village/ my family/ my friends/ my soul." --Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Dynamic details and an expansive sense of possibility . . . A caring depiction of urban life that will resonate with listeners who love the bustling energy and beauty of the place they call home." --BCCB Reviews

"Morrison paints vibrant spreads . . . The poetic text reads like a song and makes for a perfect read-aloud story . . . A positive and uplifting book that can be appreciated by all readers." --School Library Journal
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About

A love letter to the hustle, the bustle, the joy, and the grit of city life by debut author and Bronx native, Janelle Harper, and two-time Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winner, Frank Morrison.

"My block looks like
a collision of cultures
a melting pot of cool
a burst of life
my favorite groove

. . .No matter what happens
I’ve seen it for myself
my block looks like
the coolest place
I’ve ever been."

A lyrical and proud picture book that recognizes the beauty of the bodegas, subways, and playgrounds that characterize everyday life in the Bronx and pays homage to the ways that its residents have shaped pop culture through music, visual art, and dance. Perfect for fans of I Am Every Good Thing and Last Stop on Market Street, My Block Looks Like offers kids a reaffirming message to celebrate and uplift their communities in an energetic text that begs to be read aloud.

Author

Janelle Harper is a Bronx native whoproudly carries her New York accent anywhereshe goes. She finds inspiration in city living and the diverse experiences of the African Diaspora.When she is not enjoying the hidden gems of the Bronx, she is traveling and exploring new cultures. She is a proud veteran public school teacher who comes from a long line ofeducators. She is passionate about creating stories that reflect the children in her Bronx classroom and neighborhood. When she’s not thinking about her next book, Janelle can often be found in her dance studio, blasting music, yelling “five-six-seven-eight,” and preparing elaborate student productions. Visit her online at JanelleHarperAuthor.com.

Frank started his journey as a graffiti artist in New Jersey, tagging walls with spray paint. It wasn’t until he visited the Louvre Museum in Paris with his dancing group that he realized painting was his true creative path. His work has been featured at Art Basel, SCOPE Art Show, and Red Dot Miami art fair, and shown at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York City and the Mason Fine Art gallery  in Atlanta, Georgia. He is the illustrator of over twenty children’s books, including the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winners Standing in the Need of Prayer and R-E-S-P-E-C-T, the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe Award winner Jazzy Miz Mozetta, and the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor books Little Melba and Her Big Trombone and Let the Children March. Frank was a Society of Illustrators’ Original Art Silver Medal Honoree two years in a row, for The Roots of Rap and R-E-S-P-E-C-T. His debut author-illustrated picture book is Kick Push. Visit himonline at MorrisonGraphics.com.

Praise

Praise for My Block Looks Like by Janelle Harper and Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award winner, Frank Morrison:

*"[V]ibrant . . . Morrison’s illustrations provide rich sensory detail and energy to support the narrator’s observations . . . At the same time, words and images work collectively to challenge readers to slow down and pay attention to the wonders of city life that are easy to misunderstand or dismiss . . . Harper’s block (she hails from the Bronx) is alive, aptly called "my soul," and supported by Morrison’s images and warm colors, a refreshing invitation to visit or imagine this vivid, memorable place." --Horn Book, starred review

*"The artist’s careful attention to detail and the shifting visual perspectives in action scenes bring Harper’s musical text to life. The narrator argues convincingly for the Bronx as 'the coolest place I’ve ever been,' where 'dreams rise higher than the smog' and neighbors 'sparkle under streetlamps.' A culturally rich and beautifully illustrated child’s-eye view of home." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

*"Kinetic, portrait-filled art from Morrison (Breaking to the Beat!) reveals theneighborhood’s sights (double Dutch, the Icee man, pickup games), vibrantly conveying the essence ofthe protagonist’s home: “my city/ my hood/ my block. My home/ my village/ my family/ my friends/ my soul." --Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Dynamic details and an expansive sense of possibility . . . A caring depiction of urban life that will resonate with listeners who love the bustling energy and beauty of the place they call home." --BCCB Reviews

"Morrison paints vibrant spreads . . . The poetic text reads like a song and makes for a perfect read-aloud story . . . A positive and uplifting book that can be appreciated by all readers." --School Library Journal

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