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I Have Heard of a Land (Trophy Picture Books) Paperback – January 5, 2000


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: 1 - 6
  • Series: Trophy Picture Books
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (January 5, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0064436179
  • ISBN-13: 978-0064436175
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,907,851 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Inspired by her own family's history, Thomas's (Brown Honey in Broomwheat Tea) stirring picture book explores the little-known experiences of African American pioneers who settled in Oklahoma during the late 1800s. This moving, poetic account of a brave black woman who stakes a claim "where the cottonwood trees are innocent/ Where the coyote's call is a lullaby at night/ And the land runs on forever" offers a new perspective on an era otherwise well-documented in picture books and school texts. In almost palpable imagery, Thomas describes the natural beauty of a bold new frontier as well as the hopeful, strong and passionate people who created new lives there and realized their dreams. In his third collaboration with Thomas, Cooper (Brown Honey in Broomwheat Tea, Gingerbread Days), an Oklahoma native, completes the mood with his signature grainy, dreamy oil-wash portraits. His landscapes, dotted with trees, crops and cabins, glow in soft pink, yellow and brown hues. Scenes of a girl soaring on a homemade swing, neighbors worshipping in the open air and building a log house are particularly uplifting. The book stands alone as a pleasant slice of historical fiction, but will also hold much appeal for teachers and students. Thomas's author's note about the book's origins adds a special resonance to the proceedings. Ages 7-11.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4AAll who gave their hearts to Brown Honey in Broomwheat Tea (HarperCollins, 1993) will have to clear a spot for I Have Heard of a Land. Thomas and Cooper shine again in this powerful tribute to the African-American pioneers who participated in the Oklahoma land runs of 1889 and 1893. This gem reveals some hidden facets as it singles out a lone woman who hears of a place where she has only to "Lift up her feet running for the land/As though running for her life/And in the running claim it," a place where "Her possibilities reach as far/As her eyes can see/And as far as our imaginations can carry us." Thomas's evocative poem is exalted by Cooper's warm, joyous, and majestic paintings of people living out their dreams. The layout and design of the book capture the expanse of the prairie with full double-page spreads and carefully placed text. In an author's note, Thomas provides some historical and personal context. Both she and Cooper demonstrate a love for the raw beauty of the land. Though good readers can enjoy the book alone, this lyrical poem sings when read aloud.AJody McCoy, Lakehill Preparatory School, Dallas, TX
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Award-winning author of more than 30 books and several plays, including the acclaimed musical "Abyssinia", internationally-renowned and best-selling African-American writer Joyce Carol Thomas was born in Ponca City, Oklahoma and now resides in Berkeley, California. A professor and teacher for over twenty years at some of the nation's most prestigious colleges, including the University of Tennessee and Purdue University, she received her Master of Arts degree from Stanford University. Joyce is a highly sought-after motivational speaker who delivers empowering speaking presentations that engage the heart, mind, and soul. In addition to speaking at colleges and universities in the United States, she has presented lectures, seminars, and workshops on creative writing and cultural studies in Nigeria, Haiti, Ecuador, Australia, Samoa, and the Mariana Islands.

Fraternities, students, administrators, alumni, and advisors schedule appearances by this eloquent and articulate Black woman when they want to ignite their campus student body and community groups about the joys of learning. How do you honor and respect your heritage while acknowledging people of all races, cultures, and backgrounds? Want proven ways to garner your best grades? Need help choosing your campus friends wisely? Ask Joyce! She fills all of her engagements with a uniquely warm, personal, and insightful sense of learning, laughter, and love.

Joyce's numerous honors and awards include the National Book Award, the American Book Award, the New York Times Outstanding Book of the Year Award, Outstanding Woman of the 20th Century Award, three Coretta Scott King Honor Awards, the Center for Poets and Writers' Poet Laureate Award, Kirkus Reviews Editors' Choice, the American Library Association Best Book for Young Adults, Book of the Month Club Selection, and many more.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 19, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Everyone should read this story.I HAVE HEARD OF A LAND is very informing and inspirational. I personally love the poetry along with the images.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 19, 1999
Format: Hardcover
BECAUSE OF ITS BEAUTIFUL POETRY, I THINK I HAVE HEARD OF A LAND IS EXCELLENT READING FOR YOUNG AND OLDER PEOPLE
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Sharon Lewis on December 17, 2007
Format: Paperback
I bought this book as a memento of Oklahoma's centennial celebration for my adult daughter. She wants to be a children's book illustrator herself and has an art degree, so she is very selective about books like this. This book meets all her and my criteria for a beautiful children's book. It has artistically beautiful illustrations and a very positive message. It appeals to adults and children and to all races. The characters in this book are African-American, but the story is universal, and the values expressed are timeless and universal. For me it was very nostalgic when it talked of pioneer times and farm living, especially the brush arbor church services. It also spoke with reverence of a beautiful land, which I think Oklahoma is. This book might be a little advanced for pre-schoolers to listen to, but first grade and up will enjoy the story whether they can read it themselves or need someone to read it to them. I think the activities mentioned in the story would make a very good starting point for many more stories and activities for young children. It makes me, a native Oklahoman, proud of our state and people, especially knowing the auther and illustrator are both Oklahomans, too. So if the only pictures of Oklahoma you have ever seen are the old dust bowl days or the Oklahoma City bombing, you will be surprised by the beauty of our state. But it is the people who settled this state and who remained to make it a great state who earned us the title of The Heartland.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 15, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I Have Heard of a Land presents a colorful lesson in American history, in such a way that readers of all ages can enjoy. With an eloquent tone and beautiful illustrations, I Have Heard of a Land is sure to be cherished for time to come. Ms.Thomas has done it again! She has created yet another timeless work of art.
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