Brown Girl Dreaming

Brown Girl Dreaming

Book - 2014
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National Book Award Winner

Jacqueline Woodson, one of today's finest writers, tells the moving story of her childhood in mesmerizing verse.

Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child's soul as she searches for her place in the world. Woodson's eloquent poetry also reflects the joy of finding her voice through writing stories, despite the fact that she struggled with reading as a child. Her love of stories inspired her and stayed with her, creating the first sparks of the gifted writer she was to become.

Praise for Jacqueline Woodson:
Ms. Woodson writes with a sure understanding of the thoughts of young people, offering a poetic, eloquent narrative that is not simply a story . . . but a mature exploration of grown-up issues and self-discovery. The New York Times Book Review
Publisher: New York : Nancy Paulsen Books, c2014.
ISBN: 9780399252518
0399252517
Characteristics: 336 p. : ill.

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s
Starpoem
Nov 18, 2017

I've read novels in verse before, but this is the first time that I've read a memoir in verse. Poetry is a suitable vehicle for conveying the impressionistic quality of childhood memories, making it a great choice of format for this memoir of Woodson's early years.

Born in Ohio in 1963, author Jacqueline Woodson later moved to South Carolina and then to New York City, so she experienced some interesting places and times. She brings them all to life deftly in her poetry.

One interesting thing about Woodson is that she struggled to learn to read and write. So many authors were gifted readers and writers from an early age. It's refreshing for us "mere mortals" to see that hard work and motivation can also be paths to success.

The poetry in this book is filled with the music of Woodson's memories. It will send you scurrying to look up old Soul Train clips and dance along with them.

Overall, this is a positive, optimistic book about family, friendship, and dealing with life's challenges. I would recommend it for all ages.

AL_PRINAL Nov 04, 2017

My daughter loves this book. I try to find books that she will enjoy reading without struggle and this one is perfect. The stories are also thought provoking and it tells the story of Jacqueline's childhood growing up in a racial society and a loving family. excellent read

blue_dog_1998 Jul 25, 2017

From the summer reading book list, I decided to read the book titled, " Brown Girl Dreaming" by Jaqueline Woodson. This book was a bout Jaqueline Woodson's life and all the challenges she overcame. One of the main reasons I chose to read this book was because during the school year my library teacher took us to the central library near prospect park to meet the author of this book, Jacqueline Woodson. Ms. Woodson explained how the book, and many of her other books, was structured and what they were about. She also explained what inspired her to write specific sections of this book. While reading this book I witnessed many of the things which Jaqueline had talked about in her speech. One thing that caught my attention in her speech and the book was the structure of the book. This book was made up of many short stories and poem, put together as 'chapters', to show a specific memory in her life. My library teacher explained to us that Jaqueline Woodson said that she created her book in this format because it shows that you don't remember every detail about your past. You can only remember certain moments that stood out. Hearing this reminded me of how much work goes into writing a book. Final thoughts? Well I really liked the different techniques Ms. Woodson use, such as foreshadowing. one example of this is that she had said her grandfather was constantly coughing and out of breath, foreshadowing that he was sick and would soon die. the book was so well written that I felt as sad as Jaqueline did when her grandfather passed away.

w
wmtlady
Jun 29, 2017

A beautiful biographical book, written in poetic form. It gives younger readers a peephole into the past, viewed from a girl "of color" who relates to her world from her family's pride and her country's prejudice and history. A telling with truth, but not the usual spot-on, plotted story that Woodson is noted for.

n
njon38
Jun 25, 2017

I picked it for the read harder challenge category of a YA book by an author who identifies as LGBTQ. It is memories of her childhood in the south and new york written in verse, It is wonderful.

BPLpicks May 03, 2017

This very special book will be found in the children’s section of the library but will have huge appeal to adults who will enjoy it on a whole different level than a child.
Brown Girl Dreaming is the story of the author’s childhood written in free verse. It touches on her ancestry and describes what it was like growing up as an African American in the 1960’s and 70’s. It is a book about family pride and community and belonging and sometimes not belonging. It is whimsical, funny and occasionally sad. A beautiful joyful book that is a treasure to read. Brown Girl Dreaming has won The National Book Award along with too many other awards to mention. Clear an afternoon and plan to read it from cover to cover, as there is no easy place to book mark this delightful memoir.

t
TEENREVIEWBOARD
Mar 03, 2017

Brown Girl Dreaming is a wonderful collection of poems which tell the moving, beautiful and sometimes tragic stories of Jacqueline Woodson's childhood. The poems in this book display the innocence of the children growing up in Jim Crowe USA. They include the pain of losing those you love, the strength sisterhood gives you and the power of literature, all through the experiences of a child. This is a beautiful book of poetry that touches the human soul and speaks to our best and worst memories. Some of it you will be able to relate to, some of it you won't, but nonetheless, this book takes you on a journey unlike any you've ever been on before. 4/5 stars
- @activistreader of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

p
PearlyBaker
Feb 19, 2017

Jacqueline might just be the greatest living American author. She's certainly my favorite. Her silky, smooth writing style reminds me of the Grateful Dead on 5/8/77 in Ithaca, New York. She is perfection personified and like Ithaca you just know even the angels and Lord Krishna are smiling when she sits down to write each masterpiece.

m
mucho_libro
Oct 07, 2016

Woodson's experience as a brown girl pulled between families in Ohio, South Carolina and Brooklyn is so intimate and so moving. I "lived" her personal story, and the more general struggle of African-Americans in the 1960s and 70s.

j
JanPruatt
Jul 09, 2016

Recommended for ages 10 - 16 but anyone can read and enjoy this book. It's one of the 75 Best Books in the last 75 years.

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blue_dog_1998 Jul 25, 2017

From the summer reading book list, I decided to read the book titled, " Brown Girl Dreaming" by Jaqueline Woodson. This book was a bout Jaqueline Woodson's life and all the challenges she overcame. One of the main reasons I chose to read this book was because during the school year my library teacher took us to the central library near prospect park to meet the author of this book, Jacqueline Woodson. Ms. Woodson explained how the book, and many of her other books, was structured and what they were about. She also explained what inspired her to write specific sections of this book. While reading this book I witnessed many of the things which Jaqueline had talked about in her speech. One thing that caught my attention in her speech and the book was the structure of the book. This book was made up of many short stories and poem, put together as 'chapters', to show a specific memory in her life. My library teacher explained to us that Jaqueline Woodson said that she created her book in this format because it shows that you don't remember every detail about your past. You can only remember certain moments that stood out. Hearing this reminded me of how much work goes into writing a book. Final thoughts? Well I really liked the different techniques Ms. Woodson use, such as foreshadowing. one example of this is that she had said her grandfather was constantly coughing and out of breath, foreshadowing that he was sick and would soon die. the book was so well written that I felt as sad as Jaqueline did when her grandfather passed away. I rate it a five out of five!

j
JanPruatt
Jul 09, 2016

This book is written in free verse. I listened to it on CD and heard the poetry of Woodson’s words. This book is also on the list of The Best 75 Books in the Last 75 Years. Quite an accomplishment! And I agree that it belongs on this list. I was enchanted by Woodson’s memoir about growing up in South Carolina, Ohio, and New York during the Civil Rights Movement. Woodson is also a winner of many awards – The Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults, the recipient of three Newbery Honors for After Tupac and D Foster, Feathers, and Show Way, and a two-time finalist for the National Book Award for Locomotion and Hush. Other awards include the Coretta Scott King Award and Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Miracle’s Boys. In 2014, she was short-listed for the Hans Christian Anderson Award for her lasting contributions to children’s literature.

I want to read more by this enriching author.

c
cmoclark
Jun 17, 2016

"Brown Girl Dreaming" by Jacqueline Woodson, is a gorgeous memoir written in poetic voice. This book has won nearly every literary award out there, and for good reason. It's mesmerizing. A fluid read, Woodson shares her story of growing up black in the South and NYC during the era of MLK. A book of such beautiful insight, I'm thinking about purchasing a copy for our home library.

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blue_dog_1998 Jul 25, 2017

blue_dog_1998 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 8 and 99

j
JanPruatt
Jul 09, 2016

JanPruatt thinks this title is suitable for All Ages

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JanPruatt
Jul 09, 2016

The sisters in the Kingdom Hall get six minutes to be on stage, in pairs or threes, but never alone. We have to write skits where we are visiting another sister ...

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