Renowned, Reviled Actor Chronicled in 'Stepin Fetchit'
In the late 1920s and '30s Lincoln Perry, aka Stepin Fetchit, was both renowned and reviled for his surrealistic portrayals of the era's most popular comic stereotype–the lazy, shiftless Negro, chronicled in Mel Watkins book, "Stepin Fetchit."
Perry was hailed by critic Robert Benchley as "the best actor that the talking movies have produced," and Mel Watkins's meticulously researched and sensitive biography reveals the paradoxes of this pioneering actor's life, from Perry's tremendous popularity to his money troubles and rowdy offscreen antics. As later generations come to recognize Perry's prodigious talent and achievements, in "Stepin Fetchit," Watkins brilliantly and definitively illuminates the life and times of a legendary figure in American entertainment.
Stinky Stern Forever by Michelle Edwards
It's a regular afternoon at Jackson Magnet, in "Stinky Stern Forever" by Michelle Edwards. The students are working on an art project, and Matthew "Stinky" Stern is up to his usual troublemaking tricks. But when school lets out and the kids begin to head home, something unexpected-and horrible-happens that will change Mrs. Fennessey's class forever. Stinky Stern is hit by a car and killed and the students in his class face a difficult challenge: How should they remember him? This moving story is certain to resonate with anyone who has experienced the loss of a classmate or friend.