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Peace, Locomotion Hardcover – January 22, 2009

4.4 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews
Book 2 of 2 in the Locomotion Series

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 4–6—Readers of Locomotion (Putnam, 2003) will welcome the chance to revisit Lonnie's world. Written as letters from Lonnie to his sister, Lili, who is in a different foster home, the story's backdrop is the unnamed war in which his foster brother Jenkins is fighting. When war directly affects the family, the 12-year-old begins to hope and pray for peace and to grapple with its meaning. Mature readers will see, also, the steps Lonnie is taking as he moves toward peace with himself and his circumstances. While his confusion, pain, and loss are at times palpable, so too are the moments of comfort, love, and sheer joy. As Lonnie's life becomes more and more interwoven with the lives of his foster brothers, his understanding of the meaning of family deepens and grows. The small details of his days drop readers into his Brooklyn neighborhood, surrounded by characters who seem to walk right off the page. Moving, thought-provoking, and brilliantly executed, this is the rare sequel that lives up to the promise of its predecessor. Serving as bookends to the body of the text are two poems in which Lonnie describes peace in everyday terms. In his words, "Peace is the good stuff/That happens to all of us/Sometimes."—Faith Brautigam, Gail Borden Public Library District, Elgin, IL
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From Booklist

In a moving companion to the National Book Award Finalist Locomotion (2003), Lonnie, now in sixth grade, speaks in letters to his beloved little sister, Lili. The siblings are still heartbroken about their separation, which followed the death of their parents in a fire. Both kids are now safe in loving foster families in their Brooklyn neighborhood, with friends and supportive teachers at school. After Lonnie’s foster brother returns home injured from war, the contrast between the peaceful home and the tragedy of war feels savage. While this does not have Locomotion’s poetic form, the spare, beautiful prose—both the dialogue and the fast first-person narrative—is as lyrical as the first book. The simple words are packed with longing and are eloquent about the “little things people don’t think real hard about,” little things that reveal the big issues of family, community, displacement, war, and peace. Grades 4-7. --Hazel Rochman
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 4 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 860L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 144 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers; First Printing edition (January 22, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039924655X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399246555
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.6 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,290,954 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on March 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Recently I was able to pinpoint why exactly I have such a hard time reviewing Jacqueline Woodson's recent books. I mean, "Feathers" was so difficult for me that I eschewed a review altogether and while I managed to put two words together for "After Tupac and D Foster", it wasn't a review that stuck in my mind as one of my more sterling efforts. So what is it about Ms. Woodson that throws me for such a loop? It's not like she isn't good at dialogue or realistic characters. Her books contain depth and complex situations. Reading her newest title "Peace, Locomotion" I was reminded of all of this. I was also reminded, however, that Ms. Woodson isn't the kind of writer for whom fast-action and in-depth plotting holds much allure. There is a plot to this sequel to "Locomotion" but it's slow. And removing it from my To Be Reviewed shelf a month after reading it doesn't help all that much either. "Peace, Locomotion" may well be Ms. Woodson's greatest novel yet. It's thoughtful. Caring. Touching. Smart. And there are layers of depth to it that many a novelist would kill for. Don't expect a car chase or anything, though. This is one for the kids with a brain in their heads and time on their hands.

When last we saw our hero, twelve-year-old Lonnie Collins Motion (or Locomotion to his friends), he was living with his new foster mother Miss Edna, while his nine-year-old sister Lili is living with another woman. There's no one Lonnie really loves quite as much as his sister, but he doesn't get to see her half as much as he would like. In lieu of seeing her, he writes her letters that he hopes to someday give to her when she's older. Of course Lonnie is still mourning the death of their parents thanks to a fire years ago.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a very much needed and in demamd follow up to Locomotion. We get to follow the continuing connection between Locotion and his sister, Lily. We also get to live through Locomotion's process as a writer (poet) and his growth as a young man. I certainly did not want to let go of this character. This book delivers by allowing us one more chance to accompany this courageous character and his truly poetic heart.
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My students did not enjoy this book. They loved Locomotion, but they felt as if this book focused too much on sadness. Plus, the pace of the book was much slower than Locomotion. My students loved the fast pace of the poetry, but the letters were repetitive and too long.
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Format: Paperback
Once again Lonnie's thoughtful and sensitive voice resonates off of the pages of Peace, Locomotion just as they did off of Locomotion. While Locomotion was a book in verse, Peace, Locomotion is an epistolatory (written in letters) novel. All of the letters that Lonnie writes is to his sister Lili because they have been separated into different foster homes and Lonnie is to be the rememberer for the two of them. In these letters, he remembers and shares. While both Locomotion and Peace, Locomotion deal with Lonnie coming of age in a foster home dealing with the death of his parents and his sister being taken away, in Peace, Locomotion it is not the main focus- he has become comfortable with Miss Edna and sees his sister often. In Peace, Locomotion, I felt that it was more about Lonnie finding his place in the world now that he has figured out his place in his own little world.
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Format: Audio CD
After a house fire that takes the lives of their parents, Lonnie (12) and his sister Lili (9) are placed in different foster homes. Lonnie, who likes to be called"Locomotion" writes letters to his sister who he misses terribly. He updates her on what is happening at his school, his friends, his poetry, and about the war that is going on and the son that his foster mom has in it. When the war hits close to home.... Lonnie starts writing about peace.

As time passes and Lonnie continues to write to his sister, his writing changes s he grows and matures in to his surroundings. Lonnie starts to really understand the meaning of family, understanding that it can go beyond his sister as he learns to let others in.

If you have never read or listened to a Jacqueline Woodson book I highly recommend that you do. I first read her last year with I Hadn't Meant To Tell You This, and found her writing to be a steady smooth gathering of words that made it hard to put her book down. In this instance, I listened on audio and I am so glad I chose this format.

This audio was read by Dion Graham and he was the perfect voice for Lonnie (Locomotion). I really enjoyed how Dion gave the 12-year-old feel to Lonnie's voice, the excitement, the sorrow, even when he was angry.

Within this short story you really get the feel for how important teachers are to kids. When teacher tells Lonnie what a great writer he is, he blooms, and not only improves in his already great writing, but in his other classes as well. When we is told that is not a poet, he crumbles.... and both sides of this is reflected well.

Written as a series of letters, I found this short audio to be a perfect listen and a new dimension to experience with Woodson. If this book would have been large I can see where it may have drug out and become too much, yet in a short amount of time Woodson bundled up a young foster boys life into a careful package of hope, love, and peace.
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