King of Ragtime : The Story of Scott Joplin
A stunning, rhythmic picture book biography of African American composer Scott Joplin, whose ragtime music paved the way for jazz.
There was something special about Scott Joplin…
This quiet kid could make a piano laugh out loud.
Scott, the son of a man who had been enslaved,
became a king—the King of Ragtime.
This celebration of Scott Joplin, whose ragtime compositions paved the way for jazz, will captivate audiences and put a beat in their step, and the kaleidoscope-like illustrations will draw young readers in again and again.
Stephen Costanza has illustrated and written several books for children, including three about music, Mozart Finds a Melody, Vivaldi and the Invisible Orchestra, and King of Ragtime. He studied music and composition, and for a time played piano professionally, performing both ragtime and classical music. He lives on a small island in Maine.
* "Costanza delivers a biography as bouncy and colorful as ragtime itself. . . full of animation and joy, motifs that repeat throughout each gorgeous spread. . . Outstanding."
— Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
* "The melodic, flowing text goes beyond Joplin's personal details to paint a picture of what life looked like for African Americans during the Jim Crow era . . . Examples are effortlessly woven into the narrative. . . [Events] come alive through gloriously vibrant, full-page gouache collages that pop off of pages, filled with creative and expressive details . . . this attractive offering makes a great read-aloud. — Booklist, Starred Review
* "In this pitch-perfect picture book biography . . . Costanza establishes an atmospheric, folkloric tone in narration rich with onomatopoeia and figurative language . . . fine-lined human figures are delightfully fluid and surrealistic, with Costanza showcasing a deep understanding of color theory. . . A richly detailed profile fit for a king."
Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
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