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Everything Naomi Loved
Cover of Everything Naomi Loved
Everything Naomi Loved
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11th Street. It wasn't pretty but it was alive! Honking cars, pizza by the slice, Hair by Carmen, the corner bodega—and Naomi's best friend, Ada. But 11th Street begins to change. Shops close,...
11th Street. It wasn't pretty but it was alive! Honking cars, pizza by the slice, Hair by Carmen, the corner bodega—and Naomi's best friend, Ada. But 11th Street begins to change. Shops close,...
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  • 11th Street. It wasn't pretty but it was alive!

    Honking cars, pizza by the slice, Hair by Carmen, the corner bodega—and Naomi's best friend, Ada.

    But 11th Street begins to change. Shops close, buildings are torn down, and signs promise something new. One by one, Naomi's neighbors are forced to move. Faced with the transformation of her city block, Naomi picks up a paintbrush. When something we love goes away we paint it on the wall so it's always with us, her neighbor Mister Ray tells her. Naomi turns her 11th Street memories into a great mural—and discovers that where she finds people to love, she will have a place to love.

    Internationally acclaimed muralist Katie Yamasaki's paintings are at once monumental and heartfelt. Everything Naomi Loved entwines a celebration of community and friendship with a vision of social justice in this lyrical and universal story about home.

About the Author-

  • Katie Yamasaki works primarily as a muralist and picture book creator. She has painted more than eighty murals around the world, and her most recent book is Everything Naomi Loved. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and their daughter.

Reviews-

  • Kirkus

    September 1, 2020
    A community archive is preserved in a unique mural. Community sits at the heart of Naomi's life--evidenced by the city panorama on the title spread. Naomi, a beige-skinned young girl with straight brown hair and a big smile, pokes her head out the window to see her world, full of bustle and life. Cars, bicycles, and buses rush by, past the hair salon, the mechanic, the pizzeria. A ribbon of musical notes swirls around Naomi and her busy block, denoting the noisy joy of urban life. With her best friend, Ada, a Black girl, Naomi climbs a tree, rides scooters along the block, and draws pictures in sidewalk chalk. At dusk, Naomi and her family say goodnight to the lively neighborhood. All seems well until Naomi's world begins to change. The tree is cut down, Ada moves away, and stores begin to shut--falling victim to gentrification and urban renewal. With help from her shopkeeper friend Mr. Ray, a Black man, Naomi paints what she loves most about her neighborhood in a mural on her building. Little by little, though her world has altered, her mural grows until at last her community is preserved in vivid colors. Yamasaki and Lendler's straightforward yet poignant text nicely complements Yamasaki's whimsical yet grounded illustrations that depict this portrait of urban connection. Her bright, bold palette is eye-catching, with carefully portrayed diverse neighbors, young and old. Naomi's home--its sights, smells, sounds, and interactions--is forever a place of love. (Picture book. 4-8)

    COPYRIGHT(2020) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Booklist

    September 1, 2020
    Grades K-2 The nostalgic beauty and uniqueness of New York neighborhoods comes to life in this lush, vibrant book by Yamasaki and Lendler, with muralist and author Yamasaki complementing the poignant message with delightful and memorable illustrations. Naomi lives on bustling, multicultural 11th Street, which is undergoing gentrification and transformation before its longtime residents' very eyes. As Naomi and her family mourn these changes and their loves ones leave their community, businesses, and residences, she learns that home is about the who rather than the where. Naomi and her friends channel their grief and sadness into hope by beautifying the neighborhood with a personalized mural that showcases everything they loved about 11th Street, and Naomi takes this passion for public art with her when her own time comes to leave. Readers will be struck by the tear-jerking text and images in this book as Naomi witnesses both the upsetting and uplifting effects of change and experiences the power of positive memories.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2020, American Library Association.)

  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from September 14, 2020
    Naomi, a tan-skinned girl with brown hair, loves her busy, vibrant block, with its “honking, blaring, booming cars,/ and the corner bodega.” One morning, she discovers that the sidewalk tree in whose shade she and her friend Ada, a Black girl, play has been cut down. “They’re building something new,” says Naomi’s mom. “Something fancy,” says her dad. Mister Ray from the auto body shop helps Naomi mourn: “Where I grew up/ when something we love goes away/ we paint it on the wall/ so it’s always with us,” he says. He renders her beloved tree on the building’s side, and, when Ada’s building is scheduled for demolition and her family must move away, they paint Ada there, too. Yamasaki and Landler convey the loss of a living, breathing community beset by gentrification. Muralist Yamasaki paints in a distinctive folk-art style crowded with pigeons, ribbons of music, and an inclusive array of city dwellers. Together with Lendler, she champions the power of ordinary people to preserve what’s lost through art. Ages 6–8.

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    Norton Young Readers
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