Reviews for Meet Danitra Brown
Horn Book Guide Reviews 1994
Thirteen poems about two best friends that live in a big city are enhanced by illustrations that build on the warmth in the girls' friendship. Zuri particularly admires Danitra's independent spirit, and Danitra is especially considerate of Zuri's emotions. The subjects include shared activities, such as riding bicycles and playing jump rope, as well as the more serious issues of revealing secrets and sensitivity about skin color. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews
Kirkus Reviews 1994 April
~ In a lively cycle of 13 poems by the author of Somethin' on My Mind (1978), Zuri Jackson celebrates her vibrant best friend Danitra: ``the most splendiferous girl in town...She's not afraid to take a dare./If something's hard, she doesn't care./She'll try her best, no matter what.'' Danitra shares work, play, and confidences with equal verve, knows how to defuse a mean tease or comfort a friend, and loves to wear purple. In expansive double spreads, Cooper visualizes the girls' city neighborhood in glowing impressionistic pastels while focusing on subtly modeled close-ups of them in their many moods. The joyous portrayal will appeal to a broad age range (the friends are depicted as 10 or 12 years old); older readers may enjoy going on to Jean Little's equally upbeat portrait of Kate Bloomfield, Hey World, Her I Am! (1989). (Poetry/Picture book. 5-11) Copyright 1999 Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly Reviews 1997 September #3
PW gave these poems about the friendship of two African American girls a starred review, saying, "Anyone who has a best friend can relate to this realistic but bubbly volume." Ages 3-up. (Sept.) Copyright 1998 Publishers Weekly Reviews
Publishers Weekly Reviews 1994 April #2
In a series of poems, an African American girl sings the praises of her best friend and their special relationship. According to Zuri, the speaker here, Danitra is ``the most splendiferous girl in town.'' Zuri respects Danitra's quirks (she wears only purple clothing) and admires her ability to walk away from boys who taunt her about her glasses. Zuri is, moreover, grateful that ``Danitra knows just what to say to make me glad.'' Grimes's poetry has a very deliberate rhyme scheme, but it also smoothly describes a number of vignettes and links them with consistent themes and characterizations. Issues of race, feminism and family structure are delicately incorporated, and successfully build an emotional connection for the reader. Cooper's misty oil paints depict two proud, happy kids in an often grim urban landscape. Splashes of green leaves and storefront fruit and flower displays further brighten the sidewalks and apartment-building stoops. Though the selection may be especially touching for African Americans, anyone who has a best friend can relate to this realistic but bubbly volume. Ages 5-up. (Apr.) Copyright 1994 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 1994 May
Gr 2-4-A collection of 13 original poems that stand individually and also blend together to tell a story of feelings and friendship between two African-American girls. Grimes creatively uses the voice of Zuri Jackson to share tales of the girls' moments of admiration, pain, self-assurance, pride in their cultural heritage, sadness, disappointments, play, and their thoughts and feelings about future dreams and aspirations. Cooper's distinguished illustrations in warm dusty tones convey the feeling of closeness. The poignant text and lovely pictures are an excellent collaboration, resulting in a look at touching moments of friendship with universal appeal.-Barbara Osborne Williams, Queens Borough Public Library, Jamaica, NY Copyright 1994 Cahners Business Information.