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Formats
Details
  • pages
  • $
Paperback Details
  • 09/2018
  • 978-1-7320157-2-2 1726188442
  • 32 pages
  • $10.95
Ebook Details
  • 09/2018
  • B07H2TQSFY
  • 33 pages
  • $2.99
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Mama's Needle
A young boy tells of his Mama’s needle and her spool of long white thread. She uses it to patch holes in the knees of his pants, bind scraps of cloth into quilts and stitch dreams into reality. When he has a magical dream of her needle and thread, mama stitches a quilt together for remembering, and on it, are patches of his dreams. Wearing his quilt as a cape, he flies with his imagination. The narrator of this engaging story is a young African American child. One night, he dreams of his Mama’s needle and her spool of long white thread, flying through the air with its white tail of thread floating along behind, like it’s riding a wave. The needle catches a bird flying by but doesn’t hurt it. It spears some leaves shivering in a tree, and rays from the sun. It even snatches the tail of the wind and wrestles it onto the thread. His mama laughs when she hears about the dream but she stitches the images onto a quilt. “Her long shiny needle stitched those pieces together for remembering. Mama says I should go ahead and fly with my dreams.” And he does, taking his quilt with him. It becomes a cape as he rides a dog sled up a snow-covered mountain; a parachute, a saddle-blanket on a camel, a tent, a sail on a sail-boat and finally, a flying carpet.
Reviews
Winning Writers, North Street Book Prize, First Place Award

North Street Book Prize, first place award in the Children's Picture Book category, Winning Writers 2019. 

The judges and screeners were in agreement about loving Mama's Needle, Jeanette W. Stickel's excellent children's book about a young African-American boy whose mother is an artistically gifted quilter. She uses her needle not only to patch clothes but to create a beautiful quilt for his bed, a project that connects perfectly to the book's theme of dreaming.

Annie Keithline wrote this after screening the book:

"Boy muses about his mother's constant sewing. This entry [is] the perfect marriage of the illustrations, which look cut out and quilted together, and the prose, which is like a thin thread of words tying them together. The whole effort evokes homespun so completely that although the elements look a bit rough, it only enhances the charm, authenticity, and deliberateness of the message. What I like most about it is the message of thrift, which can never be delivered too often to our culture of disposability."

Jendi appreciated the dimensions of history, quilting as an African-American women's traditional art form, and a way to make beauty out of necessity.

I agree with both these assessments. I love the book's focus on the needle and the way it symbolized joy and imagination, power and empathy, creativity and thrift. Consider these lines from the book, in which the boy is describing his dream: "That needle caught a bird flying by, but it didn't hurt it" and "it speared some leaves shivering in a tree, and rays from the sun."  These poetic words meld beautifully with the colorful drawings of fabric and scraps.

Some minor concerns: A few pages featured white print on a blue background. White print is very hard on anyone with less-than-perfect eyes (consider a grandparent reading this book aloud) and impossible to see in low-light situations such as reading a child a bedtime story.

I would have liked the boy and his sister to have names, and to have seen more of their faces and expressions. The characters were often shown with their backs to the viewers, making it pretty much impossible for a child reader to discern their emotions. Despite these issues, we are proud to recommend this book as a wonderful addition to a child's collection.

We congratulate writer and illustrator Jeanette W. Stickel and illustrator Helen S. Worcester on this excellent joint effort.

 

Formats
Details
  • pages
  • $
Paperback Details
  • 09/2018
  • 978-1-7320157-2-2 1726188442
  • 32 pages
  • $10.95
Ebook Details
  • 09/2018
  • B07H2TQSFY
  • 33 pages
  • $2.99
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2018
  • ISBN-10: 1732015732 ISBN-13: 978-1732015739
  • 34 pages
  • $15.95

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