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Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut (Denene Millner Books) by [Derrick Barnes, Gordon C. James]
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Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut (Denene Millner Books) Kindle Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 1,654 ratings
Teachers' pick for K-8th grade

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut:

"Safe to say, there's nothing like the feeling of the fresh cut. You feel so extra visible with a fresh new cut, and this book built from that experience translates it in a way never before brought to the children's bookshelf. Basquiat-inspired king insignias and a bit of Kehinde Wiley flair shape portraits of all the various ways men (and women too!) come into the black barbershop to restore their cool, leaving the chair with high self-esteem, self-pride, and confidence--if only for as long as their hairlines remain crisp. It's sacred. The all-important line and the diverse styles take center stage here. The Big Daddy Kane-homage flat-top. The part. The light shape-up surrounded by cornrows and locs. The taper. The classic wavy dark Caesar. Barnes' imaginative prose mirrors the hyperbole and swagger of the barbershop. No cut is just good. It will have you looking "presidential," "majestic." Like you own "a couple of acres of land on Saturn." The swagger is on a million. The sauce is drippin'. James' oil-based portraiture will send many readers reminiscing. This book oozes with black cool and timely, much-needed black joy, using the unique and expansive experience of the barbershop to remind young boys that their inner lives have always mattered there. One of the best reads for young black boys in years, it should be in every library, media center, and, yes, barbershop." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"A powerfully moving tribute to barbershop culture . . . . Pride, confidence, and joy radiate from the pages, both in the black and brown faces of men, women, boys, and girls featured in Barnes's majestic paintings, and in writing that celebrates human worth with every syllable." --Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Themes of confidence-building, self-esteem, and joy of young black boys are the important takeaways, and the illustrations jump off the page and invite readers to share in the experience. A super fun read-aloud, this title is a recommended purchase for all picture book collections." --School Library Journal, starred review

"Alternately precise, metaphorical, and culturally specific, Barnes's descriptions make each page a serendipity. . . . A not-to- be-missed portrayal of the beauty of black boyhood." --Horn Book Magazine, starred review

"Barnes mixes fresh and sharp lines with an integral part of the African American experience: maintaining one's hair. Illustrator James deftly uses bright colors . . . and a colorful galaxy complements Barnes' words well. The strong voice will resonate with readers, soothe any young child scared of their first cut, and give a boost of confidence to the seasoned pros." --Booklist

"In this homage to Black barbershops, the author perfectly captures the meaning of this rite of passage for Black boys. And breathtaking visuals by the infinitely creative Gordon C. James match the energetic text. If the first three tomes are any indication, Denene Millner Books will continue to highlight the best talent and reads for an audience who truly deserves both." --Essence

"The perfect gift for all the fly young black boys in your life." --Blavity.com

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 3—Rhythmic text describes the feeling of a young African American boy as he gets a "fresh cut" and how a trip to the barbershop changes the way he feels about the world and in turn how the world perceives him. He might just "smash that geography exam" or "rearrange the principal's honor roll" and, of course, the cute girl in class won't be able to keep her eyes off of him. The protagonist spends time looking at black men in chairs next to him and creating vivid stories about their lives: "the dude to the left of you with a faux-hawk…looks presidential…maybe he's the CEO of a tech company." Oil paintings illustrate the intricacies of the haircuts, details in the characters' faces, along with the sense of well-being that is conveyed along the way. While a trip the barbershop is the main story line, the themes of confidence-building, self-esteem, and joy of young black boys are the important takeaways, and the illustrations jump off the page and invite readers to share in the experience. VERDICT A super fun read-aloud, this title is a recommended purchase for all picture book collections.—Kristen Todd-Wurm, Middle Country Public Library, NY --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B06XP2BQNK
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Agate Bolden; Illustrated edition (October 10, 2017)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ October 10, 2017
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 6356 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Not enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 32 pages
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.9 out of 5 stars 1,654 ratings

Customer reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9 out of 5
1,654 global ratings
5 star
93%
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3 star
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on October 11, 2017
134 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on February 11, 2018
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33 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on December 17, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Love love love this book!!!!
By Casli Jean on December 17, 2018
This is a definite must have for any collection. I read this to my 6 and 9 year and they loved it. As for myself I absolutely loooovvveeee this book!! First of all the images are absolutely breathtaking. It is so refreshing to see such a beautiful array of brown and black people captured so eloquently. The mixtures of of red and pink hues in the faces are just perfect. Secondly, the story itself flows so gracefully, almost like poetic form. And lastly, the way story captured that confidence and pride that needs to be instilled in all of our young men was the best part. This story needs to be in all of our homes and schools and not just for people of color. It's a really wonderful book.
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16 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on November 8, 2017
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good book
By Boddiegirl on November 8, 2017
So happy I purchased this book. It’s truly an investment. I’m confident that this book, it’s message and images will have a positive impact on my boys. It was a great bedtime read, my 6 year old especially liked this. I also liked the authors note. The context gave my an appreciation for the barber and the importance of that experience for our boys.
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10 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on November 6, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on August 30, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Confidence Builder
By Mrs. JAMRSN on August 30, 2018
I usually shy away from books with 5 star ratings but this one stood out. The boy on the front cover looked confident. When my son had an issue at school with some other kid, I knew I could wait any longer. As soon as I started reading, I knew he lived it. He’s 8 and plays football but LOVES getting his haircut. The only thing I didn’t like was some of the artwork (oil painting look) because it was distracting but I’m glad that it’s not hard at all to see the writing through the artwork.
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5 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on March 20, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on October 2, 2017
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