Donald Crews ~ Greenwillow Books, 1980
Celebrating African American History Month, I'm gonna focus for a few days on vintage children's books specifically imagined by black writers and illustrators. Taking the excellent advice of reader Dawn D. Lion, I'm turning my attention for the moment on Donald Crews. Though Jerry Pinkney made history last month as the first individual African-American to win the Caldecott Medal for The Lion & the Mouse... Crews has gotten close as a two-time Caldecott Honor winner, one of which was received in celebration of this ditty. Clearly created with a designer's eye, it's a wordless fable of signs, cities, vehicles and highways. The bold use of colors, letters and shapes makes it great for babies and toddlers, while the logos and words throughout offer huge fun for a first reader.Though his first Honor book, Freight Train, is more remembered... Truck packs a wallop if you have one of those kids obsessed with all things wheeled. I'd also forgotten Crews is married to another awesome children's book writer and illustrator, Ann Jonas. Thanks for the remind today, Dawn! Ever since my son became Harry Potter obsessed, he's set his younger books aside. Might be time to see if I can dig up my fave, Rain, again!