very child loves the fun and excitement of wearing costumes and pretending. Now imagine if you got the chance to dress up and ride in a Mardi Gras parade. That is exactly what happens to the main character in D.J. and the Zulu Parade Yet riding on the popular Zulu parade on Fat Tuesday, dressed as a page to the queen of Zulus, he finds that along with the thrills comes some concerns. Like any child thrown into a new situation, young D.J. finds that it can be quite overwhelming. D.J has to cope with his fears of falling off the float, of what his costume will be, and about the make-up he will have to wear. This book answers many questions children have about the customs and traditions of their own heritage, and it does so in a way children can understand and relate to. They can see their own fears and worries in D.J.s view of the experience. The appeal of the book is to both the children of New Orleans who experience Mardi Gras every year, and children in general. The message of the book and the mystery of the traditions of New Orleans have a universal appeal. A book for children aged five to eight, D.J. and the Zulu Parade is based upon the experiences of McConduits son who actually rode in the Zulu Parade. A busy mother of four, Ms. McConduit also finds time to write poetry and participate in the New Orleans Poetry Forum.
Denise Walter McConduit comes from a family of thirteen children and is a New Orleans native and mother of four. Her work has appeared in Essence, Black New Orleans, and the New Orleans Tribune. Currently, she serves on the advisory board of the Friends of the New Orleans Public Library and is a member of the Society of Childrens Book Writers and Illustrators. Also the author of Pelicans D.J. and the Debutante Ball, D.J. and the Zulu Parade, and D.J. and the Jazz Fest, she based her previous character on her son. McConduit lives in New Orleans, Louisiana. Emile F. Henriquez is currently design coordinator at Textron Marine and Land Systems. He studied drawing, painting, design, and art history at Tulane University and has worked as a graphic illustrator since 1963. He also collaborated with Ms. McConduit on the previous two D.J. titles.