A spunky girl has a hula-hooping competition with her friends in Harlem, and soon everyone in the neighborhood—young and old alike—joins in on the fun.
Kameeka is confident that today she will finally beat her rival, Jamara, and become the Hula-Hoopin’ Queen of 139th Street. But then Mama reminds her that today is their neighbor Miz Adeline’s birthday, and Kameeka has a ton of chores to do to get ready for the party they are hosting. Kameeka’s disappointed to be stuck at home and can only think about the hoopin’ competition. Distracted, Kameeka accidentally ruins Miz Adeline’s birthday cake, and has to confess to her that there won’t be a cake for her special day. But then Miz Adeline’s confesses something too: she’s also got the itch—the hula-hoopin’ itch! Her fingers start snappin’. Her hips start swingin’. Soon everyone’s hips are swinging as the party spills out onto the street. The whole neighborhood’s got the itch—the hula-hoopin’ itch!
With vibrant illustrations by Vanessa Brantley-Newton, The Hula-Hoopin’ Queen is a charming celebration of family and community ties. Set in Harlem, this intergenerational story shows the importance of staying young at heart.
Vanessa Brantley-Newton is a self taught illustrator of more than 80 children’s books. She first fell in love with picture books when she was read the Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats as a child. It was the first time Vanessa saw an image of a brown child that looked like her. Diversity is at the very heart of her illustrations and storytelling. She has written and illustrated three of her own books, Let Freedom Sing, Don’t Let Auntie Mabel Bless The Table and Grandma’s Purse. Vanessa wants every child to know the joy she felt when she saw herself in a picture book. “I want every child to know that I see you.” Vanessa is a lover of music and food. When she isn’t creating children’s Books she is cooking or singing somewhere. She lives in NC with her husband of 25 years and her daughter Zoe.