Good. Very minimal damage to the cover no holes or tears, only minimal scuff marks minimal wear binding majority of pages undamaged minimal creases or tears. Book may have writing, underlining, highlighting, wear to cover and corners, notes in margins, writing.
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This is a beautiful book by the same author and illustrator of Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt. However, this time, the narrator remains anonymous but is not forgotten. Without undue melodrama, she tells how part of her family is about to be sold off; the time is now or never to escape, which she and part of her family does. Though the slaves are fleeing their cruel owners, the book focuses on the good, kind people along the underground railroad who help the runaways find safety in Canada. Noteworthy are the secret codes the fleeing slaves and their protectors used, such as the owl hoot, lantern, and log cabin quilt patterns. The latter idea is drawn from "Hidden in Plain View," an adult book that unlocks much of the secret communication that enabled thousands of slaves find safety and freedom. (I recommend "Hidden in Plain View" highly.) The illustrations are breathtaking; I particularly like the geese flying north when the family reaches a northern US church (flying geese is another quilt code pattern). This book should be read with "Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt" and "Follow the Drinking Gourd." The story of the Underground Railroad is a story of how conscientious good can overcome evil. "Under the Quilt of Night" is a story that needs to be told and remembered.
Publishers Weekly, 2001-11-26 Dramatic oil paintings and compelling verse-like prose combine to portray the harsh yet hopeful experience of travel along the Underground Railroad. Hopkinson and Ransome revisit the theme of their first collaboration, Sweet Clara and the Freedom Quilt. This time readers journey the precarious trail to freedom with a young runaway as she escapes to Canada via clandestine routes and dangerous nighttime treks. The intense opening spread features three panels showing her nameless family running for their lives by the light of the full moon, some shoeless or with only rags on their feet. (Subsequent pages show snarling dogs and overseers in hot pursuit.) The story comes to a formidable climax when they're almost discovered hiding in the back of a wagon. Hopkinson names each segment of the journey ("Running," "Waiting," "Hiding") and her narrative conveys the emotional and physical hardships of the trip ("Fear is so real, it lies here beside me"). The author connects the metaphorical protective quilt of night with folkloric elements (legend has it that quilts with blue center squares indicated safe houses on the Underground Railroad). Ransome fills in the characterizations with portraits that convey a strong familial connection and the kindness of the conductors along the way. This suspenseful story successfully introduces and sheds light on a pivotal chapter in America's history for youngest readers. Ages 5-10. (Jan.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Publishers Weekly, 2005-01-03 "Dramatic oil paintings and compelling verse-like prose combine to portray the harsh yet hopeful experience of travel along the Underground Railroad," wrote PW in a starred review. Ages 5-10. (Jan.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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