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Peace, Locomotion


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About the Author

Jacqueline Woodson ( is the 2018-2019 National Ambassador for Young People's Literature, and she received the 2018 Children's Literature Legacy Award. She is the 2014 National Book Award Winner for her New York Times bestselling memoir BROWN GIRL DREAMING, which was also a recipient of the Coretta Scott King Award, a Newbery Honor Award, the NAACP Image Award and the Sibert Honor Award. Woodson was recently named the Young People's Poet Laureate by the Poetry Foundation. Her recent adult book, Another Brooklyn, was a National Book Award finalist. Born on February 12th in Columbus, Ohio, Jacqueline Woodson grew up in Greenville, South Carolina, and Brooklyn, New York and graduated from college with a B.A. in English. She is the author of more than two dozen award-winning books for young adults, middle graders and children; among her many accolades, she is a four-time Newbery Honor winner, a four-time National Book Award finalist, and a two-time Coretta Scott King Award winner. Her books include THE OTHER SIDE, EACH KINDNESS, Caldecott Honor Book COMING ON HOME SOON; Newbery Honor winners FEATHERS, SHOW WAY, and AFTER TUPAC AND D FOSTER, and MIRACLE'S BOYS--which received the LA Times Book Prize and the Coretta Scott King Award and was adapted into a miniseries directed by Spike Lee. Jacqueline is also the recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement for her contributions to young adult literature, the winner of the Jane Addams Children's Book Award, and was the 2013 United States nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award. She lives with her family in Brooklyn, New York.


Following the character introduced in Locomotion, Woodson switches from poetry to letters to show how 12-year-old Lonnie Collins Motion, aka Locomotion, maintains a bond with his younger sister, Lili. He reminds her of their past: "There was a time before your foster mama came and said, 'I'll take the little girl but I don't want no boys.'Å" Besides missing his sister and their late parents, Lonnie has other problems to cope with (his foster mother's son returns from Iraq disabled and traumatized). In his letters, Lonnie shares the big and small details of his days, works through philosophical struggles (a friend tells him that "Miss Edna was my mama now"), and includes some of the tender poems he composes. Although the epistolary motif makes for some stilted writing, Woodson creates a full-bodied character in kind, sensitive Lonnie. Readers will understand his quest for peace, and appreciate the hard work he does to find it. Ages 9-12. (Jan.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Gr 4-6-Lonnie (Lonnie Collins Motion), a 12-year-old African-American boy, and his younger sister, Lili, are in separate foster homes since their parents died in a house fire some years earlier. Desperate to keep the sibling relationship alive, Lonnie makes sure they visit and he also writes letters to Lili that document their lives and his intention for them to be together one day. In Jacqueline Woodson's sequel (2009) to her National Book Award Finalist, Locomotion (2003, both Putnam), the whole concept of peace and war comes into Lonnie's life as his foster mother's son returns home from the war without his legs. Lonnie's growing sense of peace and the futility of war becomes a large part of this story, and each letter to Lili is signed "Peace, Locomotion." Dion Graham's narration sounds exactly like that of a boy whose world is constantly shifting. His expert use of prosody makes each and every letter come alive. Lonnie's job in his family is to be "the rememberer," and Graham's performance is equally memorable. Woodson's well-developed characters, lyrical text, and important themes and Graham's superb narration make this engaging audiobook a must-have for library collections.-Joan Kindig, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.

* "Readers of Locomotion will welcome the chance to revisit Lonnie's world. . . . While his confusion, pain, and loss are at times palpable, so too are the moments of comfort, love, and sheer joy. . . . The small details of his days drop readers into his Brooklyn neighborhood, surrounded by characters who seem to walk right off the page. Moving, thought-provoking, and brilliantly executed, this is the rare sequel that lives up to the promise of its predecessor."
--School Library Journal, starred review

"A moving companion to the National Book Award Finalist Locomotion. . . . The spare, beautiful prose--both the dialogue and the fast first-person narrative--is as lyrical as the first book. The simple words are packed with longing and are eloquent about the little things people don't think real hard about, little things that reveal the big issues of family, community, displacement, war, and peace."
--Booklist "Woodson creates a full-bodied character in kind, sensitive Lonnie. Readers will understand his quest for peace, and appreciate the hard work he does to find it."
--Publishers Weekly

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