Two unlikely friends—a German outsider and the daughter of the local prison warden—discover each other at the same time they discover Slater Carr, the boy who was a lifer at Cayuta Prison. His nightly bugle renditions of Taps hold their small town in thrall until his actions, one Halloween night, change everything. . . .
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M. E. Kerr is a winner of the American Library Association's Margaret A. Edwards Award for Lifetime Achievement and the ALAN award from the National Council of Teachers of English. Ms. Kerr lives in East Hampton on New York's Long Island.From School Library Journal:
Grade 8 Up–In 1934, teenaged Jessie lives in a small upstate New York town where her father is the warden in the state prison. Her mother is a bit of a social climber, while her father has allowed himself to become overly friendly with a prisoner, Slater, a young Southerner with a heartbreaking background and a keen musical talent. Jessie is pleasantly surprised when the daughter of the German professor who has moved into the neighborhood makes direct appeals for friendship. So unfolds the first section of this deceptively straightforward but sophisticated and engrossing novel. Jessie's friendship with Elisa is interrupted when the Stadlers abruptly return to Germany, an event that happens at the same time that Slater is killed in a situation that makes it appear that he murdered a local man. Jessie and Elisa correspond during the next few years, their letters–as well as those from their acquaintances–making up the latter portion of the novel. Years later, in 1946, Jessie learns what really happened to Elisa. Kerr weaves an authentic story in which characters can know only so much at any given moment of their lives, and actually misunderstand much of what they think they know. The period and the place are re-created with excellent detail. Kerr doesn't have to make Jessie pronounce the big questions because she does such a thorough job of showing that they should be every reader's questions: what is really going on, both under our noses and inside the lives of people we care about but cannot know completely?–Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley Public Library, CA
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Book Description HarperTeen, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110060756845
Book Description HarperTeen, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 60756845
Book Description HarperTeen, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0060756845
Book Description HarperTeen. PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0060756845 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW6.0016095
Book Description HarperTeen, 2007. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0060756845