Brainy Parenting

Jump at the Sun: The True Life Tale of Unstoppable Storycatcher Zora Neale Hurston

Author: Alicia D. Williams

Illustrator: Jacqueline Alcántara

Published in 2021 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers

Jump at the Sun is a vibrant and uplifting autobiographical picture book about the remarkable author and storyteller Zora Neale Hurston. Poetic language and luminous artwork showcase her radiant passion and fierce determination to boldly pursue her dreams of writing and sharing stories. As her Mama always said, “jump at de sun. You might not land on de sun, but at least you’d get off de ground.” Her story follows her as she jumps from place to place, starting when she was a child in her hometown where she was inspired by the stories she heard from folks in her community, followed by her writing at Howard University, then to the promise of the Harlem Renaissance. This book is a tribute to her life, work, and legacy researching and preserving Black stories and folklore.



Rich with figurative language and vivid details, the significant amount of text lends itself to this book being a longer read. With that said, every word is worth cherishing. The words dance across the pages surrounded by vibrant colors and warmth. The book concludes with an author’s note to provide additional historical context, biographical information, and sources for further research. This magnificent story of Zora Neale Hurston is sure to captivate readers and inspire storytellers.

Additional Resources:

  • Meet author Alicia D. Williams
  • Blog by author Alicia D. Williams
  • Meet illustrator Jacqueline Alcántara
  • Illustrator Jacqueline Alcántara portfolio
  • Read “How Alicia D. Williams Is Reviving Storytelling for Black Children”
  • Learn more about Zora Neale Hurston from National Women’s History Museum
  • Learn more about Zora Neale Hurston from Britannica Kids



This post appeared first on Samantha Cronin's Kid Lit Library.