Jerry Craft’s middle-grade graphic novel New Kid broke new ground in more ways than one: it was the first graphic novel to win the Newbery Medal(it also won the Coretta Scott King Author Award and Kirkus Prize for Young Readers’ Literature), and it’s the first mainstream middle-grade graphic novel to frankly depict the everyday racism that Black youths face in and out of school.
Now Craft is back with a new story, Class Act, which he describes not as a sequel but as a companion volume…
Publishers Weekly talks to Jerry Craft:
I wanted to show the different boxes, where you have Maury [a wealthy African American student], you have Jordan, you have Drew, and you have Kirk, Jordan’s friend from the block. They are all very different African American boys, instead of that one universal boy you see on TV who is a rapper, trying to get into the NBA, whose dad is in prison.