Reviews for Soul Looks Back in Wonder
Horn Book Guide Reviews 1994
In a harmonious blending of Feelings's artwork and verse by thirteen poets -- including Margaret Walker, Langston Hughes, Maya Angelou, Lucille Clifton, and Eugene B. Redmond -- the book looks to African roots for reaffirmation of the spirit of creativity in African-American life. Colored pencil, colored paper, stencil cut-outs, and other techniques bring a collage effect to the striking portraits. Copyright 1998 Horn Book Guide Reviews
Publishers Weekly Reviews 1993 November #2
For his first full-color picture book, Caldecott Honor artist Feelings ( Jambo Means Hello ) solicits poems from a stellar lineup of contemporary African American authors. The contributors, he writes, ``understand that one way to project our positive hopes for the future is for young people to see their own beauty reflected in our eyes, through our work.'' The selections--by Maya Angelou, Lucille Clifton, Askia M. Toure and 10 others--are uniformly uplifting, with affirming messages about the heritage, strength and dreams of African Americans. ``Who / can be born black / and / not / sing / the wonder of it / the joy / the / challenge,'' asks Mari Evans. Drawings of figures stand out against dynamic, poster-like designs in collages that emphasize the ``flow of African creativity'' that the artist wishes to share; a note on the copyright page explains Feelings's use of blueprints, colored pencils, spray paints, cutouts and colored papers (including marbleized paper and wallpaper). The verse was gathered after the art was completed--in a sense, the poetry illustrates the collages. Of special note is Langston Hughes's previously unpublished ``To You,'' written for a poster Feelings executed in 1962. Hughes invokes dreamers to help him make ``our world anew,'' while Feelings's breathtaking design incorporates a winged figure flying through a vista of violets, golds and olive green. A unique celebration. Ages 7-up. BOMC selection. (Nov.) Copyright 1993 Cahners Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 1994 January
Gr 5 Up-Artist Feelings invited poets whom he admired to compose original, short verses for these drawings, with breathtakingly rich and powerful results. A tribute to African-American creativity, the collection should appeal to the sensibilities and imaginations of many readers, regardless of ethnic background. A never-before published poem by Langston Hughes, written to accompany Feeling's 1962 poster for the Congress of Racial Equality, is included. The 11-line piece asks, ``All you who are dreamers too,/Help me to make/Our world anew./I reach out my dreams to you.'' Maya Angelou, Walter Dean Myers, and Lucille Clifton are among the 12 other contributors. The full-color, three-quarter and double-spread art depicts children and young people from West Africa, South America, and the United States, but a few of the poems do not speak to young children, e.g., Haki R. Madhubuti's ``Destiny'': ``under volcanoes & timeless years within watch/and low tones. around corners, in deep caves among/misunderstood and sometimes meaningless sounds./ cut beggars, outlaw pimps & whores. resurrect work.'' That poem, as well as Eugene B. Redmond's Boyz n Search of Their Soular System, will prove more meaningful to adult and young adult readers.-Judy Greenfield, Rye Free Reading Room, NY Copyright 1994 Cahners Business Information.