Irene Jennie and the Christmas Masquerade: The Johnkankus

Irene Jennie and the Christmas Masquerade: The Johnkankus

by Irene Smalls, Melodye Rosales
     
 
Everyone is excited in the slave quarters, for Christmas is the day when the wild parade known as the Johnkankus explodes through the quarters. Irene Jennie wants to be joyful, but the master has loaned her parents out to work on another farm for the day. When Johnkankus arrives she gets caught up in the celebration--and what happens after the parade goes on its way

Overview

Everyone is excited in the slave quarters, for Christmas is the day when the wild parade known as the Johnkankus explodes through the quarters. Irene Jennie wants to be joyful, but the master has loaned her parents out to work on another farm for the day. When Johnkankus arrives she gets caught up in the celebration--and what happens after the parade goes on its way makes this a very special day for one young girl. Full color.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The Johnkankus festival, according to the author's note here, was a kaleidoscope of color and song danced along the dirt roads of North Carolina (and other places in the South) as a special Christmas celebration for hundreds of slaves. Rosales ('Twas the Night Before Christmas, p. 89) brings young readers there with sharply detailed oil paintings that pulsate with jubilant energy. She saturates each canvas with a rich and earthy palette and gives life to shining, memorable faces. Smalls's lengthy text, however, possesses less flair. Unlike the heroine of Smalls's Jenny Reen and the Jack Muh Lantern (p. 85), who is also a slave, Irene Jennie sounds like Gone with the Wind's Prissy: "Buts Godmama, I'se gots no family on Christmas Day." Later, the author stretches the storytelling too thinly in her attempt to incorporate the fruits of her research, leaving readers with perhaps too much of a good thing. Ages 4-8. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Mary Sue Preissner
Irene Jennie is a sad girl this Christmas Day for her parents have been rented to the next plantation for a short time to help that family with the holiday preparations and celebrations. For this Christmastime, all she wants is for her parents to return. When the Johnkankus (a wild parade through the slave quarters every Christmas day) begins, she is, nevertheless, caught in the spirit of the season. The lively music, costumes, and dancing are a prelude to Irene's special "gift" which she receives at the end of the parade. Rosales, who has previously illustrated the Addy series, brings a warmth and richness of color to the full-page illustrations. Text pages are bordered by a single line, with a smaller illustration that pertains to the text of that page.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780316798785
Publisher:
Little, Brown and Company
Publication date:
10/28/1996
Edition description:
1st Edition
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.79(w) x 11.29(h) x 0.34(d)
Lexile:
910L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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