In the late 1880’s, a call went out across America: Free land in Oklahoma, for any who will settle it. Many of those who rushed to claim that land were newly freed slaves, eager for a fresh start in a new place, and filled with the fire and hope required to survive settling the frontier. Based on her family’s own history, Joyce Carol Thomas has written a beautiful book that tells of that call and the hope that came with it. This lovely, lyrical book is perfect for reading out loud.— Flannery
I have heard of a land
Where the imagination has no fences
Where what is dreamed one night
Is accomplished the next day
In the late 1880s, signs went up all around America - land was free in the Oklahoma territory. And it was free to everyone: Whites, Blacks, men and women alike. All one needed to stake a claim was hope and courage, strength and perseverance. Thousands of pioneers, many of them African-Americans newly freed from slavery, headed west to carve out a new life in the Oklahoma soil.
Drawing upon her own family history, National Book Award winner Joyce Carol Thomas has crafted an unforgettable anthem to these brave and determned people from America's past. Richly illustrated by Coretta Scott King Award honoree Floyd Cooper, I Have Heard of a Land is a glorious tribute to the Afrian-American pioneer spirit.
00-01 Sequoyah Children's Book Award Masterlist
Joyce Carol Thomas is an internationally renowned author who received the National Book Award for her first novel, Marked By Fire, and a Coretta Scott King Honor for The Blacker the Berry and for her first picture book, Brown Honey in Broomwheat Tea. Her picture book I Have Heard of a Land received a Coretta Scott King Honor and an IRA/CBC Teachers' Choice Award and was an ALA Notable Book. Her other titles include The Gospel Cinderella, Crowning Glory, Gingerbread Days, and A Gathering of Flowers. Ms. Thomas lives in Berkeley, California.
Floyd Cooper received a Coretta Scott King Award for his illustrations in The Blacker the Berry and a Coretta Scott King Honor for Brown Honey in Broomwheat Tea and I Have Heard of a Land. Born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Mr. Cooper received a degree in fine arts from the University of Oklahoma and, after graduating, worked as an artist for a major greeting card company. In 1984, he came to New York City to pursue a career as an illustrator of books, and he now lives in Easton, Pennsylvania, with his wife and children.