Carolyn Meyer White Lilacs

ISBN 13: 9780152958763

White Lilacs

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9780152958763: White Lilacs
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Rose Lee Jefferson overhears the ladies of the garden club discussing the city’s plans to level Dillon’s black community, Freedomtown, to build a park for the city’s white residents. The plan is carried out, and nothing remains of Freedomtown but the memories of its former residents and a series of drawings that Rose Lee makes to celebrate the community. “Meyer’s moving account is as much a documentary as a novel, with a vividly realized setting and a good array of characters to dramatize issues.”--Kirkus Reviews

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About the Author:

Carolyn Meyer is the acclaimed author of more than fifty books for young people. Her many award-winning novels include Mary, Bloody Mary, an ABA Pick of the Lists, an NCSS-CBC Notable Children's Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, and an ALA Best Book for Young Adults; Anastasia: The Last Grand Duchess, a New York Times bestseller; White Lilacs, an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, an NYPL Best Book for the Teen Age, and an IRA Young Adults' Choice; and Marie, Dancing, a BookSense Pick. Ms. Meyer lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Visit her website at www.readcarolyn.com.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 5-7-In a small Texas town in the 1920s, 12-year-old Rose Lee Jefferson's favorite places are the gardens tended by her beloved grandfather. Granted "toting privileges" by his white employers, he has planted a profusion of colorful flowers around his home, so striking that Rose Lee calls the spot the Garden of Eden. Happily surrounded by her hard working, loving family, the girl is shocked when she overhears the casual plan to move her entire black community to the sewer flats, so that a park can be built in the middle of town. Reactions from her neighbors range from quiet resignation and prayer to calls for strikes and a return to Africa. Some whites respond with threats of violence. Rose Lee feels sad and confused, but undertakes a special mission. Perfectly evoking time and place, Meyer carefully layers detail upon detail, until readers nearly breathe the humid floral scents and hear the languid voices so carelessly spelling destruction for a whole way of life. The tone and pace are just right, and characterization is true and varied. Although readers can't help but identify with Rose Lee's first-person narration, the presentation (based on a real incident) is well balanced. Ultimately, this story is about relationships and the difficulties that can be endured when caring people come together. Thematically reminiscent of Mildred Taylor's Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry (Dial, 1976), it could be read as a companion piece, but deserves attention in its own right. Thoughtful readers will hope for an encore.
Cindy Darling Codell, Clark Middle School, Winchester, KY
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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