The Bicycle Man

Front Cover
Parnassus Press, 1982 - Juvenile Fiction - 40 pages
Twelve-year-old Carissa lives with her widowed mother, Lorena, in rural Georgia.There aren't many ways for a black woman in the South in 1927 to make a living.Lorena does laundry for white ladies, but she wants Carissa to have the opportunities that come with education.Both of them yearn to move up north, where Carissa was born.Into their lives rides an elderly man on a shiny blue bicycle.Bailey is a wanderer, a storyteller, a thinker, a kind and sociable man who can repair and tighten up and fix just about anything.Soon he's part of Carissa's life, almost like the grandfather she never had.He teaches her how to ride his bicycle, and how to find her balance in other ways as well, and Bailey's time with Carissa and her mother helps him decide how to continue his own journey.A vividly rendered setting, strong, memorable characters, and a narrative rich in humorous and poignant moments make this first novel a compelling and distinctive coming-of-age story.

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User Review  - wichitafriendsschool - LibraryThing

The amazing tricks two American soldiers perform on a borrowed bicycle are a fitting finale for the school sports day festivities in a small village in occupied Japan. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - achamb15 - LibraryThing

This book was very interesting and a great window of another culture looking into another culture. The language of this story is very clear and descriptive."he looked like a small boy greeting a giant ... Read full review

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About the author (1982)

Allen Say was born in Yokohama, Japan, in 1937. He dreamed of becoming a cartoonist from the age of six, and, at age twelve, apprenticed himself to his favorite cartoonist, Noro Shinpei. For the next four years, Say learned to draw and paint under the direction of Noro, who has remained Say's mentor. Say illustrated his first children's book -- published in 1972 -- in a photo studio between shooting assignments. For years, Say continued writing and illustrating children's books on a part-time basis. But in 1987, while illustrating THE BOY OF THE THREE-YEAR NAP (Caldecott Honor Medal), he recaptured the joy he had known as a boy working in his master's studio. It was then that Say decided to make a full commitment to doing what he loves best: writing and illustrating children's books. Since then, he has written and illustrated many books, including TREE OF CRANES and GRANDFATHER'S JOURNEY, winner of the 1994 Caldecott Medal. He is a full-time writer and illustrator living in Portland, Oregon.

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