Author Collaborates With Elementary-Age Granddaughters to Create Vibrant Picture Book That Explores the Rich History and Culture of Paterson, New Jersey

In ‘Colorful Journey,’ Jennifer Tiritilli Ranu and her granddaughters Giuliana and Karolina bridge generational gaps and examine the past, present and future of America’s first planned industrial city

Bloomington, Indiana, UNITED STATES

PATERSON, N.J., Oct. 19, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Founded in 1792 by George Washington and Alexander Hamilton, Paterson, New Jersey, has been an epicenter of industrial growth, cultural diversity and natural wonder. Today, tourists travel from all over the country and world to revel in the splendor of the renowned Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park but often are unfamiliar with the city’s expansive and important history.

In her new book ‘Colorful Journey,’ author and retired educator Jennifer Tiritilli Ranu takes readers through the experience of growing up in Paterson during the mid-twentieth century.  The story and Paterson’s history are narrated by a 10-year-old African American girl named Sweety, who encounters a bossy groundhog with a fascinating offer: if Sweety’s friend, Giuliana, an artist, can correctly guess his name, he will take them and their neighborhood playmates on a colorful journey through Garret Mountain.

After Giuliana correctly guesses his name, the groundhog, Butternut Yellow, leads the pack through iconic Paterson landmarks, including the dried-out Morris Canal Bank, the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad tracks and beautiful Lambert Castle in Garret Mountain. Throughout the colorful journey, Sweety weaves in insights on the city’s socioeconomic and cultural conditions, explains popular fun pastimes of the neighborhood children, reflects on what the Founding Fathers would think of the city’s changes in the 1950s and ponders what developments will come through the area in the next century.

As a Paterson native who spent her childhood playing on Jersey Street, climbing Garret Mountain to pick wild cherries, drinking fresh cold water from a watering spring and exploring the Great Falls, Ranu wrote the book to share the history of her hometown with a new generation of readers, illustrate what childhood in the 1950s was like and reminisce with other baby boomers over their shared adolescent experiences. She worked closely with her granddaughters Giuliana and Karolina in developing the story and characters and with William Paterson University sophomore Caleigh Snyder for the illustrations, ensuring the book would resonate with readers both younger and older.

An exciting educational tool for children, adults and seniors alike, “Colorful Journey” offers an important lesson about one of America’s most historically significant cities and a unique opportunity for intergenerational bonding.

“Colorful Journey”
Written by Jennifer Tiritilli Ranu, Giuliana Ranu and Karolina Ranu
Illustrated by Caleigh Snyder
ISBN: 9781984579874 (softcover); 9781984579881 (hardcover); 9781984579867 (electronic)
Available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Xlibris

About the authors
Jennifer Tiritilli Ranu was born and raised in Paterson, New Jersey, and grew up on dead-end Jersey Street during the 1950s.  She received her bachelor’s degree in education from William Paterson University and her Master of Education degree from Montclair State University.  She worked as an educator in Paterson schools, teaching first, fourth and eighth grade as well as high school science and served as an athletic academic advisor at John F. Kennedy High School. She also served as an educator in other northern New Jersey school districts and as an adjunct professor preparing future teachers at Montclair State University. Currently, she works as a Volunteer in Park - Storyteller at the Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park and a volunteer at the Paterson Museum. She is the author of two other books, “Italians of Greater Paterson” and “SkateKey.” To learn more about Ranu, please visit

Giuliana and Karolina Ranu are the 11-year-old twin granddaughters of Jennifer Tiritilli Ranu. Giuliani is an artist, singer and clarinet player. Karolina is a pianist and cooking enthusiast. Both girls enjoy taking art classes, attending music lessons, and playing sports, including basketball, soccer and swim.

Xlibris Publishing, an Author Solutions, LLC imprint, is a self-publishing services provider created in 1997 by authors, for authors. By focusing on the needs of creative writers and artists and adopting the latest print-on-demand publishing technology and strategies, we provide expert publishing services with direct and personal access to quality publication in hardcover, trade paperback, custom leather-bound and full-color formats. To date, Xlibris has helped to publish more than 60,000 titles. For more information, visit or call 1-888-795-4274 to receive a free publishing guide.



Contact Data