A Likkle Miss Lou: How Jamaican Poet Louise Bennett Coverley Found Her Voice

Nadia L. Hohn, illus. by Eugenie Fernandes. Owlkids, $16.95 (32p) ISBN 978-1-77147-350-7
The poet Louise Bennett Coverley (1919–2006), a seminal figure of the Caribbean diaspora, is portrayed as a child who loves the melodious and creative lilt of Jamaican patois, the dialect her mother and neighbors speak to each other. But at school, teachers insist “that words had to click like clacking wheels, and that sentences should line up like the tramcar tracks in Kingston.” When she switches schools, Louise finds the courage to share her dialect poems and, eventually, an appreciative audience. Coverley, who performed as Miss Lou, was “the first Black person to host a radio show on the BBC,” among other achievements detailed in the closing author’s note. Bright illustrations in creamily vivid color by Fernandes capture the richness of life reflected in the language that so captivated Coverley and conveys how the things she sees reappear on the pages she writes. Ages 4–8. (Aug.)
Reviewed on : 07/03/2019
Release date: 08/01/2019
Genre: Children's
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