Desiree Cooper is a journalist, community activist, widely published essayist, and the author of Know the Mother. Between 1910 and 1970, more than 6 million African Americans left the Jim Crow South, but they never forgot the culture, the land, and the family they left behind, and it has long been a summer ritual for many Black families to return to the South to visit their homeplaces. In the picture book Nothing Special (Wayne State University Press) – illustrated entirely of repurposed textiles by Bec Sloane – 6-year-old Jax can’t wait to leave Detroit and spend a week with his grandparents in coastal Virginia. He knows they will spoil him with the special things he loves: toys, movies, and hamburgers. As he dreams of his adventures, his PopPop has other ideas. He fills their days with timeless summer fun – crabbing, shucking corn, and counting fireflies. The book is a celebration of the enduring connection between the generations who stayed in the South and the millions of emigrants for whom it will always be home.