Written by: Jacob Kramer
Illustrated by: K-Fai Steele
For ages: 4 years and up
Topics Covered: Social Justice, Activism, Protest, Friendship, Community, Oppression, Community, Ingenuity, Peaceful Action.
In our next installment of #sweetsandsocialjustice we have Noodlephant! I made some brown sugar cornmeal shortbread, inspired by Noodlephant making pasta from unique ingredients. Follow the link in bio for the recipe, and tag us if you make this delicious treat!
This book is absolutely phenomenal and teaches readers about social justice, oppression, and community organizing. Noodlephant is a lovely character for this humorous book that has so many lessons about activism embedded within its pages. Protesting, campaigns, and the unfairness of treatment under an oppressive law is all covered in this glorious book. A second book is coming out this year and we are SO excited to see the next installment!
Noodlephant is known for her love of pasta, and hosting lovely delicious parties for her friends. When the kangaroos in charge start making more and more restrictive rules, like who can and can’t go to the pool, things start to change-and not for the better. Soon, Noodlephant isn’t even allowed to eat noodles anymore! Heartbroken, she sets to work to create a machine that will create her delicious and enticing noodly creations under the cover of secrecy. When she is tried in a kangaroo court and sentenced to the zoo, how will Noodlephant cope?
So we don’t typically post a lot of animal books on here, but Noodlephant is absolutely incredible! We were thrilled to find a copy for ourselves (spending our own money!) and snatched it up on a trip to our local Contemporary Art Museum, (the second shock of this post being that we actually bought something at a museum gift shop!).
Recipe: Brown Sugar Cornmeal Shortbread
1.5c All Purpose flour (I typically use Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 gf ap flour for myself)
2 sticks butter
1/2c dark brown sugar
1/3c sugar (I use either maple sugar or white sugar)
1t vanilla extract
Cream butter and sugar, add egg and vanilla. Add dries and mix just until they are incorporated. For thicker shortbread, put all dough into 1 eight inch cake pan, or split into 2. Bake at 300 for about 45-55 minutes.
About the Author & the Illustrator:
Jacob Kramer studied writing and filmmaking, and went on to work in community organizing and writing kids books. He tells stories in which people band together to build power and change their world.
If you must know a fun fact, know this: Penelope Taylor and Jacob trained Bags, the cat, to use the toilet using the Mingus Method. Follow Jacob on twitter: @jknotjk
From illustrator’s K-Fai Steele’s website: “If you want to know how to pronounce my name, watch this book trailer for A Normal Pig. I use she/her pronouns.
A Normal Pig is my author-illustrator debut, and is published with Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins. I also illustrated Noodlephant by Jacob Kramer (Enchanted Lion Books, 2019), and Old MacDonald Had a Baby by Emily Snape (Feiwel & Friends/Macmillan, 2019). In 2020 I’m illustrating Probably a Unicorn by Jory John, and Okapi Tale (the sequel to Noodlephant).
I’ve always loved art and books, and I’ve worked in museums and libraries as an adult. I was an Art Handler at the Museum of Modern Art in New York where I got to install Starry Night. I worked at the Free Library of Philadelphia, and later the National Writing Project on an IMLS/MacArthur initiative to co-design creative and educational spaces for young people in public access institutions.
I live in San Francisco and I’m a 2018-2019 Brown Handler Writer in Residence at the San Francisco Public Library. I’m the 2019 recipient of the James Marshall Fellowship at the University of Connecticut, and I received the Ezra Jack Keats/Kerman Memorial Fellowship in 2018 at the University of Minnesota.
I’ve presented at the American Library Association Annual meeting and Midwinter meeting, the Tucson Festival of Books, the Bay Area Book Fest, the Princeton Children’s Book Festival, EpicFest in Charlotte, NC, Kidquake/Litquake in San Francisco, the International Literacy Association annual conference, and the National Council of Teachers of English convention. In 2020 I’ll be presenting at the AISC LitFest in Chennai, India, the Turn the Page! Festival in Oakland, and I’m the featured author for the Danville-San Ramon (East Bay) KidsReads.”