for The Black Snowman by Phil Mendez and Carole Byard
Jacob is an angry, bitter city child of color who associates his family's poverty with their race. He reluctantly joins his younger brother's efforts to create a snow figure from traffic-dirtied snow. The rag they find in the trash and drape over the snowman is actually colorful West African kente cloth. Its magical powers enable Jacob to envision the dark beauty of his majestic ancient African ancestors about which the snowman tells him. Byard's sweeping, curving lines, her exceptionally well depicted human figures and her selection of luminous blues, gray, black and purple hues add emotional power and depth to the story. Although there's an abundance of child appeal in this long complex story within a story, it also requires a double suspension of disbelief. Honor Book, 1989 CCBC Coretta Scott King Discussion. (Ages 7-10)
CCBC Choices 1989. © Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 1989. Used with permission.
Christmas is coming, and snow is falling on the city. Jacob and his little brother make a snowman out of the dingy snow on their street, and wrap their creation in a scrap of cloth they find. But the cloth is really a kente, an African storytelling shawl that has special, magical qualities. Soon, Jacob's snowman has come to life-and is about to teach him an unforgettable lesson about history, hope, heritage...and faith.
Publisher description retrieved from Google Books.