The Steel Pan Man of Harlem
Once upon a time in the city of Harlem, there was a terrible problem. Rats had taken over the city. They were everywhere―subways, restaurants, even people’s homes! The mayor didn’t know what to do. Then one day a stranger stepped off the subway and began playing a melody on a simple steel pan. People began to dance. The man went to the mayor and told him he could play many melodies, including one that would solve Harlem’s rat problem―for a price. The mayor had no choice. He agreed. The man was true to his word. He played a melody to drive away the rats. But the mayor refused to keep his word. The man with the steel pan had no choice. He played the mayor another tune for another purpose. . . . A captivating retelling of The Pied Piper of Hamelin, set in the Harlem Renaissance.
|Interest Level||Kindergarten - Grade 3|
|Reading Level||Grade 2|
|Genre||Fiction, Picture Books|
|Publisher||Lerner Publishing Group|
|Imprint||Carolrhoda Books ®|
- ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Award
Library Media Connection
“The rich and beautifully rendered oil paintings provide the feel of the Harlem Renaissance.” —Library Media Connection
“Bootman (Fish for the Grand Lady) triumphs with this gorgeously moody, thoroughly cinematic retelling of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, ingeniously set during the Harlem Renaissance and starring a mysterious musician from the Caribbean. . . With text that beautifully embellishes the pictures, and a far happier and more politically relevant ending than the original (after Harlem’s white mayor reneges on his promise to pay the musician for driving out the rats, he’s seen fox-trotting out of town, never to be seen again), this book has all the makings of a spellbinder.” —Publishers Weekly
School Library Journal
“Bootman’s full-color paintings are full of life and his steel pan man has quite a gleam in his eye. A great way to revitalize a well-known tale.” —School Library Journal
Illustrator: Colin Bootman
Colin Bootman is the award-winning illustrator of many books for children, including Young Frederick Douglass, Almost to Freedom, and The Steel Pan Man of Harlem—which he also wrote. He and his books have received numerous awards, including the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor, the Schneider Family Book Award, and the Teacher’s Choice Award. Born in Trinidad, Mr. Bootman came to the United States at the age of seven and found that art helped him cope with his new environment. Once a young artist himself, Mr. Bootman hopes his art can encourage children to follow their dreams and embrace their passions.