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All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First Day of Freedom
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All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First Day of Freedom

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  756 ratings  ·  189 reviews
Experience the joy of Juneteenth in this celebration of freedom from the award-winning team of Angela Johnson and E.B. Lewis.

Through the eyes of one little girl, All Different Now tells the story of the first Juneteenth, the day freedom finally came to the last of the slaves in the South. Since then, the observance of June 19 as African American Emancipation Day has spread
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published May 6th 2014 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published June 1st 2013)
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Average rating 4.13  · 
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 ·  756 ratings  ·  189 reviews

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Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Realistic watercolor illustrations by E.B. Lewis complement the inspirational narrative by Angela Johnson in this story that depicts slaves in Texas learning of their freedom, inspiring the Juneteenth holiday.

The images of children waking to light streaming in through their window is so beautiful, which contrasts starkly with their terrible working and living conditions. And the celebration of the announcement at the seaside shows how the family hopes that the tide is turning and that their liv
Feb 14, 2015 rated it liked it
If you don’t already know the story of Juneteenth Day, this book won't enlighten you until you get to the author’s notes at the back of the book. By starting at the end, you will learn that at the conclusion of the Civil War, many slaves did not yet know they were now free. [The author errs in her note (although not in her timeline) by stating that slaves were free as of the Emancipation Proclamation of January 1, 1863. This was a wartime measure and in any event did not free all the slaves; som ...more
Erica Clou
Jun 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
A beautiful book with beautiful artwork, but it's not stand alone. I explained slavery to my kids first and subsequently explained Juneteenth before reading this book. Without background information, young kids will find it difficult to understand the joy in the book. The book was a very valuable part of explaining Juneteenth though. ...more
Dee's Reading Zone
Easy read for children between the ages of 3 to 8 years of age or the young at heart!

"All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First Day of Free" by Angela Johnson was most definitely a basic yet inspiring story on how slaves were given their freedom on June 19th, 1865. Brilliant and vibrant watercoloring with strong shadowing style throughout the picture book ... loved this simple but powerful story.

"that a Union general had read from a balcony that we were all now and forever free and things would
Feb 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
1. "As we've been reading and learning about African-American history in the United States, we've focused on slavery and the Emancipation Proclamation. Does anyone remember what the Emancipation Proclamation did?" (pause for answer) "Yes, it stated that everyone held as a slave was free. Even though President Lincoln issued the proclamation on January 1st, it took a long time for it to become a reality in all states. Today, we're going to read a book called All Different Now. As we will see, it ...more
Mar 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
I read this book last night at the library, thinking I might get it to read to my six year-old daughter. The story is very touching and the artwork is BEAUTIFUL, but I think this book is for kids that are a bit older than mine is. Before I read it to her, I'd have to explain slavery, the Civil War, and Emancipation. She only knows a little about the Civil War and Lincoln right now, but once we've learned a bit more, I would love for her to read this book, especially since it deals with Emancipat ...more
Oct 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
As a picture book, the artwork is nice to look at. It's fluid and fits the tone of the story well. Since it's not nonfiction, the story itself doesn't really delve into what Juneteenth is and why it was such a big deal. It does get the message across on how important it was to black people. I'd recommend this book for a younger age group, somewhere between 3-6. It could possibly come with questions from the child but I think they'd just enjoy the flow of the book. ...more
Sep 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Artistic interpretation of the Juneteenth announcement that slavery had ended. Don't miss the author and illustrator notes and additional historic information in the back. ...more
Jun 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
everything about this book is stunning. the prose, the illustrations. the emotion behind it. so wonderful. another great book by angela johnson.
Jul 13, 2021 rated it really liked it
I am on a journey, learning and relearning history. It can be a rocky road.

The entire feel of this book is lovely and hopeful. The story itself is a glimpse into an event that needs more information for the uninformed, which the author then gives in her notes at the end. I had begun following someone on Instagram earlier this year who spoke a lot about Juneteenth, so I was aware of the events already. I should say FINALLY aware, just this year. I am trying to allow myself grace as I learn these
Feb 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Celebrate the beauty of freedom in this book dedicated to Juneteenth. Told from the point of view of a young girl, the story is about the first Juneteenth, the day that freedom was first announced for the last of the slaves in the South. Living in shacks on a plantation in Texas, the day is just another day for the girl and her family and the rest of the slaves. They worked hard in the hot sun, not knowing that word of their freedom was steadily heading their way. Then the news arrived and peopl ...more
Jun 16, 2015 rated it liked it
1. I made a text to world connection with the book All Different Now: Juneteenth, the First Day of Freedom by Angela Johnson. In this book, the narrator, who is a little African American girl, starts to notice adults all around her responding to some extremely incredible news. I can make a connection to the world because I know about the fight for freedom in the Civil War. Although the book does not mention the war, I know that it lasted a long time, and slaves were held in great anticipation an ...more
Mar 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A little girl in Galveston, TX, wakes up one morning to find that her whole world has changed when news arrives from the port that all slaves are now and forever free. Her family and the rest of the people in the field receive the news with different emotions as the news overwhelms them and fills their hearts with joy and hope. They all end the day at the beach with a celebration that grows as more and more free people join them.
This historical fiction picture book gives us the perspective of a
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: children-s-lit
This book tells the story of the first Juneteenth, which is the day that the last slaves in Texas found out that they were free. The story is told through the eyes of a small slave girl as she describes her surroundings and how everything is "different now."

I enjoyed the pictures in this book, and the topic of the book; however, I do not feel that this book did a great job addressing what Juneteenth actually is. It is not until the timeline, vocabulary, and authors note at the end that one can r
Jun 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
There aren't very many picture books about Juneteenth. In this 2014 book, Angela Johnson conveys the enormous joy surrounding the 1865 announcement of freedom for slaves on Galveston Island who had toiled on for more than 2 and a half years after Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation. Without describing the horrifying atrocities of slavery, Johnson gives young readers a clear sense of change that transpired when the endless cotton field labor that proceeded the Juneteenth announcement was replaced ...more
Carrie Charley Brown
Wow. To imagine a day when freedom finally comes to the last of the slaves in the South. It is difficult to put in words how amazing this book is. It is best to let the author and illustrator do it for you. The illustrations and words are so very moving, including the notes shared at the end of the book. Everyone needs to read this book!
Mar 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Coretta Scott King Award winners Angela Johnson and E.B. Lewis write about a young girl, who remains nameless, who shares the story of her slave family on the first day of freedom. The story begins with a layout of watercolor that spans the pages of slaves working in the hot cotton fields. The illustrations depict just how dire the conditions were as was shown through a worker who is patting his sweaty face while the rest are bent over picking cotton. Once news spread that a Union general declar ...more
alisonwonderland (Alison)
I have to admit that I’d not heard of Juneteenth until a few years ago. I hope that everyone now recognizes the significance of June 19, 1865.

Angela Johnson has written beautiful text for this picture book, based on an imaging of what the first Juneteenth might have meant for her great-grandparents. I especially love this line: “What was before would be no more.”

E.B. Lewis’s illustrations are gorgeous! In the Illustrator’s Note, he says, “I hope this book will act as a beacon that shines its lig
Sarah Krajewski
Dec 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My son had been asking to learn more about Juneteenth, so we read this one as a family. Loved—and learned so much from—the gorgeous illustrations, words, and the author’s and illustrator’s notes at the end.
Lynn  Davidson
Feb 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautiful telling of the end of slavery in the USA, and shown in wonderfully expressive illustrations.
At the back of the book there is a page of Important Dates; a page called Juneteenth, then and now; and a page of online sources and Key Terms.
Jun 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Written to honor her great-grandmother and Juneteenth! An excellent story of how things can change in a day and freedom to be had. This was my first Juneteenth book i've read and it was a great place to start to learn about the holiday ...more
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childhood
A beautifully illustrated book in the medium of watercolor depicting the soulful jubilee of the slaves when they found out that they were freed by the Proclamation of Emancipation of the Union.
Tiffany Richards
Jun 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
Read it b/c Trump's bae talked about it. :D ...more
Seema Rao
Watercolor illustrations and clear,concise text tell the story of a group of cotton working slaves learning of emancipation (Juneteenth).
Johnson, A., & Lewis, E. (2014). All different now: Juneteenth, the first day of freedom. New York: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.

Picture Book

This book uses simple text to tell the powerful story of one family of slaves in Texas learning of their freedom on June 19, 1865. The prose is almost lyrical - “And nobody knew, as we ate a little, talked a little, and headed to the fields as the sun was rising, that soon, it would all be different.”

The story and illustrations give the reader
Hunter Branch
Feb 01, 2016 marked it as to-read
This book tells the Juneteenth, which was the day that the slaves were emancipated. The story is told through the eyes of a young girl, who wakes up to a typical morning, not knowing how the events of the day would change her life forever. All of the slaves were carrying out their daily tasks when news of their freedom maid it through the town and to their plantation. They celebrated that night as free people and woke the next morning to a new reality in which they were unsure of exactly what th ...more
Thomas S.
Sep 13, 2016 rated it liked it
4: All Different Now – Juneteenth, the first day of freedom
Summary: This book is set on June 19th 1865 – the day slaves were told that they were free. The first person narrator, a girl, describes it as a perfectly normal morning. Her family woke up and went to work at the cotton field. Then word spread in Texas and into the cotton field, that slavery was abolished. The narrator’s aunt started singing in joy, and the elder bowed their heads in gratitude of the big day. The rest of the day, all th
Colleen Smith
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
All Different Now by Angela Johnson and illustrated by E.B. Lewis won the ILA teachers choice award in 2015.
The story is told by a little girl who wakes up thanking that it will be any other day. Her and her family are slaves that work on a cotton farm in Texas and find out on June nineteenth that they are free. The family is happy and some are crying because they thought this day would never come. They celebrate by having a picnic on the shore. The story ends with the family riding away from t
Harvest McCampbell
May 29, 2016 rated it liked it
The emancipation proclamation, made by President Lincoln on January 1, 1893, set the stage for end of slavery, but it did not instantaneously set all the slaves free. That news did not reach Texas until June 19, 1865; and that is what Juneteenth is all about.

This sensitively illustrated children's book tells the story of that day from a young girl's view; a young girl who started out the day as a slave and was then free.

This book is great addition to a Juneteenth theme. It would make a great co
Mady Dailey
1. I made a text to text connection with the book, Fifty Cents and a Dream Young Booker T. Washington. In All Different Now, the book shows the transition from being an African American slave during the Civil War to becoming a free person. The story follows a young African American girl's perspective of what it felt like and what she witnessed as the slaves became free people. Just like this story, Fifty Cents and a Dream Young Booker T. Washington starts out in the same way, but only following ...more
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