Locomotion

Locomotion

3.7 32
by Jacqueline Woodson
     
 

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Finalist for the National Book Award

When Lonnie was seven years old, his parents died in a fire. Now he's eleven, and he still misses them terribly. And he misses his little sister, Lili, who was put into a different foster home because "not a lot of people want boys-not foster boys that ain't babies." But Lonnie hasn't given up. His foster mother, Miss Edna

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Overview

Finalist for the National Book Award

When Lonnie was seven years old, his parents died in a fire. Now he's eleven, and he still misses them terribly. And he misses his little sister, Lili, who was put into a different foster home because "not a lot of people want boys-not foster boys that ain't babies." But Lonnie hasn't given up. His foster mother, Miss Edna, is growing on him. She's already raised two sons and she seems to know what makes them tick. And his teacher, Ms. Marcus, is showing him ways to put his jumbled feelings on paper.

Told entirely through Lonnie's poetry, we see his heartbreak over his lost family, his thoughtful perspective on the world around him, and most of all his love for Lili and his determination to one day put at least half of their family back together. Jacqueline Woodson's poignant story of love, loss, and hope is lyrically written and enormously accessible.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In 60 poems, an orphaned boy explores the various forms of poetry. "Through her hero, the author creates a contagious appreciation for poetry while using the genre as a cathartic means for expressing the young poet's own grief," said PW in a starred review. Ages 8-up. (Dec.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
VOYA
This book takes the reader into the life of a young boy growing up in a foster home after being separated from his little sister. Its simple yet honest poetry gives you a clear look into the feelings and emotions of Lonnie as he takes what he is given and makes poetry out of it. Locomotion gives you a point of view not often told and takes you on a journey to remember. VOYA CODES: 5Q 4P M J S (Hard to imagine it being any better written; Broad general YA appeal; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2003, Putnam's, 128p,
— Lisa Paluszkiewicz, Teen Reviewer
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-Four years after losing his parents in a fire, and separated from his younger sister, an 11-year-old African-American boy finds catharsis in writing poetry. Told in Lonnie's affecting voice, this tightly constructed, exemplary novel in verse will touch readers' hearts. JD Jackson's cassette narration allows listeners to feel the rhythm of the different poetic forms from sonnets to haiku to free verse. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Count on award-winning Woodson (Visiting Day, p. 1403, etc.) to present readers with a moving, lyrical, and completely convincing novel in verse. Eleven-year-old Lonnie ("Locomotion") starts his poem book for school by getting it all down fast: "This whole book’s a poem ’cause every time I try to / tell the whole story my mind goes Be quiet! / Only it’s not my mind’s voice, / it’s Miss Edna’s over and over and over / Be quiet! . . . So this whole book’s a poem because poetry’s short and / this whole book’s a poem ’cause Ms. Marcus says / write it down before it leaves your brain." Lonnie tells readers more, little by little, about his foster mother Miss Edna, his teacher Ms. Marcus, his classmates, and the fire that killed his parents and separated him from his sister. Slowly, his gift for observing people and writing it down lets him start to love new people again, and to widen his world from the nugget of tragedy that it was. Woodson nails Lonnie’s voice from the start, and lets him express himself through images and thoughts that vibrate in the different kinds of lines he puts down. He tends to free verse, but is sometimes assigned a certain form by Ms. Marcus. ("Today’s a bad day / Is that haiku? Do I look / like I even care?") As in her prose novels, Woodson’s created a character whose presence you can feel like they were sitting next to you. And with this first novel-in-verse for her, Lonnie will sit by many readers and teach them to see like he does, "This day is already putting all kinds of words / in your head / and breaking them up into lines / and making the lines into pictures in your mind." Don’t let anyone miss this. (Fiction. 9-13)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780142415528
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
01/07/2010
Pages:
144
Sales rank:
72,396
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 2.00(d)
Lexile:
NP (what's this?)
Age Range:
10 Years

Read an Excerpt

Table of Contents

ALSO BY JACQUELINE WOODSON

Title Page

Copyright Page

Dedication

Epigraph

 

POEM BOOK

ROOF

LINE BREAK POEM

MEMORY

MAMA

LILI

FIRST

COMMERCIAL BREAK

HAIKU

GROUP HOME BEFORE MISS EDNA’S HOUSE

HALLOWEEN POEM

PARENTS POEM

SONNET POEM

HOW I GOT MY NAME

DESCRIBE SOMEBODY

EPISTLE POEM

ROOF POEM II

ME, ERIC, LAMONT & ANGEL

FAILING

NEW BOY

DECEMBER 9

LIST POEM

LATE SATURDAY AFTERNOON IN HALSEY STREET PARK

PIGEON

SOMETIMES POEM

WAR POEM

GEORGIA

NEW BOY POEM II

TUESDAY

VISITING

JUST NOTHING POEM

GOD POEM

ALL OF A SUDDEN, THE POEM

HEY DOG

OCCASIONAL POEM

HAIKU POEM

LATENYA

POETRY POEM

ERIC POEM

LAMONT

HIP HOP RULES THE WORLD

PHOTOGRAPHS

NEW BOY POEM III

HAPPINESS POEM

BIRTH

LILI’S NEW MAMA’S HOUSE

CHURCH

NEW BOY POEM IV

TEACHER OF THE YEAR

EASTER SUNDAY

RODNEY

EPITAPH POEM

FIREFLY

THE FIRE

ALMOST SUMMER SKY

CLYDE POEM I: DOWN SOUTH

FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL

DEAR GOD

LATENYA II

JUNE

 

Acknowledgements

Discussion Questions

An Exciting Preview of: Brown Girl Dreaming

An Exciting Preview of: Peace, Locomotion

MAMA

Some days, like today and yesterday and probably tomorrow—all my missing gets jumbled up inside of me.

 

You know honeysuckle talc powder?
Mama used to smell like that. She told me honeysuckle’s really a flower but all I know is the powder that smells like Mama.
Sometimes when the missing gets real bad
I go to the drugstore and before the guard starts following me around like I’m gonna steal something
I go to the cosmetics lady and ask her if she has it....

ALSO BY JACQUELINE WOODSON

After Tupac and D Foster

Behind You

Beneath a Meth Moon

Between Madison and Palmetto

Brown Girl Dreaming

The Dear One

Feathers

From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun

The House You Pass on the Way

Hush

I Hadn’t Meant to Tell You This

If You Come Softly

Last Summer with Maizon

Lena

Maizon at Blue Hill

Miracle’s Boys

Peace, Locomotion

SPEAK

 

Published by the Penguin Group
Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 345 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, U.S.A.
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Registered Offices: Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London WC2R 0RL, England

 

First published in the United States of America by G. P. Putnam’s Sons,
a division of Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers, 2003
Published by Speak, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) Inc., 2004

 

Copyright © Jacqueline Woodson, 2003

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