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Vanessa Brantley Newton

Biography

Vanessa Brantley Newton

Vanessa Brantley Newton grew up in a musical family who loved to sing. She is a self-taught illustrator, doll maker, and crafter who studied fashion illustration at FIT and children's book illustration at the School of Visual Arts in New York. She loves all things old and retro and it finds its way into her illustrations and artwork. Vanessa currently makes her nest in Charlotte, NC with her husband of 20 years, their daughter, and a very rambunctious cat named Stripes.

Vanessa Brantley Newton

Books by Vanessa Brantley Newton

by Cynthia Levinson and Vanessa Brantley Newton - Biography, Children's 5-9, History, Nonfiction

Nine-year-old Audrey Faye Hendricks intended to go places and do things like anybody else. So when she heard grown-ups talk about wiping out Birmingham’s segregation laws, she spoke up. As she listened to the preacher’s words, smooth as glass, she sat up tall. And when she heard the plan --- picket those white stores! March to protest those unfair laws! Fill the jails! --- she stepped right up and said, I’ll do it! She was going to j-a-a-il!

Written by Ramin Ganeshram with illustrations by Vanessa Brantley Newton - Children's 7-11, Historical Fiction, Holiday

Everyone is buzzing about the president's birthday! Especially George Washington's servants, who scurry around the kitchen preparing to make this the best celebration ever. Oh, how George Washington loves his cake! And, oh, how he depends on Hercules, his head chef, to make it for him. Hercules, a slave, takes great pride in baking the president's cake. But this year there is one problem --- they are out of sugar. This story, told in the voice of Delia, Hercules's young daughter, is based on real events, and underscores the loving exchange between a very determined father and his eager daughter, who are faced with an unspoken, bittersweet reality. No matter how delicious the president's cake turns out to be, Delia and Papa will not taste the sweetness of freedom. 

Written by Cari Best with illustrations by Vanessa Brantley Newton. - Children's, Fiction, Inspirational, Picture, Youth Fiction

Zulay and her three best friends are all in the same first grade class and study the same things, even though Zulay is blind. When their teacher asks her students what activity they want to do on Field Day, Zulay surprises everyone when she says she wants to run a race. With the help of a special aide and the support of her friends, Zulay does just that.

by Debbie Levy and Vanessa Brantley Newton - African American Interest, Children's, Fiction, Music, Racism

It only takes a few people to believe that change is possible. And when those people sing out, they can change the world. "We Shall Overcome" is one of their songs. From the song's roots in slavery through to the civil rights movement of the 1960s and today, "We Shall Overcome" has come to represent the fight for equality around the world. 

by Marie Harris and Vanessa Brantley Newton - Education, Fiction, Juvenile Fiction

Imagine that when you hear a bell you see silver or when a dog barks you see red. That’s what it’s like for Jillian --- when she hears sounds she sees colors. At first the kids at school make fun of Jillian. Jillian worries about being different until her music teacher shows her that having synesthesia is an amazing thing.