America, My New Home by Monica Gunning

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From her Caribbean island birthplace, a young girl carries a dream and journeys to a new land that is at once puzzling, frightening, and inspiring. In twenty-three compelling poems, Jamaican-born poet Monica Gunning tells her immigrant's story with gentle humor, grace, and a child's sense of wonder. She desribes a place where skyscrapers, rather than the moon, light the night; where people dress in woolens, ready for snow; where no one knows your name. Yet this same place offers exciting treasures: dizzying amusement park rides, stirring symphony concerts, flashy circus performers, towering cathedrals, and captivating art museums that speak to those who linger. Above all, this new land is place where "hope glows, a beacon / guiding ocean-deep dreamers / from storm surfs to shore."

About Monica Gunning

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Monica Gunning is the author of Not a Copper Penny in Me House, an NCTE Notable Book in the Language Arts selection, and Under the Breadfruit Tree. She lives in California. Ken Condon provided artwork for Sky Scrape/City Scape: Poems of City Life, selected by Jane Yolen, and When a City Leans Against the Sky, poems by Allan A. De Fina. He lives in Ashland, Massachusetts. A former elementary teacher, Monica has written several picture books for children, Perico Bonito, a bilingual book, and The Two Georges, a bilingual ABC book. Her latest work is Not a Copper Penny in Me House, an illustrated book of her poems, an NCTE Notable Children's Book in the Language Arts. She earned a bachelor's degree from City University in New York City, and a master's degree from Mount St. Mary's in Los Angeles. Monica was named one of the Outstanding Elementary Teachers inthe U.S. and is a member of a number of organizations devoted to children's literature. The mother of two sons, Monica is originally from Jamaica, West Indies. Who am I? "In the sixth grade, many years ago, I won the school's poetry contest for writing a poem entitled 'My Garden.' But my dream to be a writer lay dormant a long time. During a sabbatica lfrom teaching, I took a course in Children's Literature at Mount St. Mary's College and met several authors. In conversation, I realized there were stories in my head waiting to be put on paper.
Published November 1, 2004 by Wordsong. 32 pages
Genres: Travel, Children's Books, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Jamaica-born Gunning turns from her previous offerings of Caribbean poems to these free-verse and rhyming poems about the immigrant experience.

Nov 15 2004 | Read Full Review of America, My New Home

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