Author, Illustrator and Past Parent Jerry Craft Visits Country School
When school librarian Mary Ann Lansdale introduced Jerry Craft, past parent and author of “New Kid,” to an audience of Middle School students, she asked who had read his book. The majority of hands flew up.
Mr. Craft’s popular middle grade graphic novel about an African-American boy navigating his new school while staying true to himself has earned a Booklist five-starred review and has been described as “possibly one of the most important graphic novels of the year.” Kirkus Reviews called it “an engrossing, humorous, and vitally important graphic novel that should be required reading in every middle school in America.”
“I make the books I wish I had as a kid,” said Mr. Craft. “Most of the books I read when I was young couldn’t have been further from my day-to-day life.”
Mr. Craft told the audience that his love of illustration and doodling began in middle school. Over the last 20 years, he has written and illustrated more than 30 books, many of them comic books by his publishing company, Mama’s Boyz. Mr. Craft said that his success has come from always trying to get better, even in the face of rejection.
“His messages echoed those that Country School shares with children – to stick with things that may seem hard, find and explore your interests and passions, and to remain open to new connections,” said Head of Middle School Kirsten Rosolen.