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Out of the Dust: A Novel

Hesse, Karen

58,028 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0590376195 / ISBN 13: 9780590376198
Published by Scholastic Inc
Used Condition: Fair
From Wonder Book (Frederick, MD, U.S.A.)

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Acceptable condition. Book Very Good. No dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # R09D-01642

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Out of the Dust: A Novel

Publisher: Scholastic Inc

Book Condition:Fair

About this title

Synopsis:

FOR USE IN SCHOOLS AND LIBRARIES ONLY. A poem cycle that reads as a novel narrates the story of 15-year-old Billie Jo and her battle against the elements during the Oklahoma Dust Bowl of 1934.

Review:

Like the Oklahoma dust bowl from which she came, 14-year-old narrator Billie Jo writes in sparse, free-floating verse. In this compelling, immediate journal, Billie Jo reveals the grim domestic realities of living during the years of constant dust storms: That hopes--like the crops--blow away in the night like skittering tumbleweeds. That trucks, tractors, even Billie Jo's beloved piano, can suddenly be buried beneath drifts of dust. Perhaps swallowing all that grit is what gives Billie Jo--our strong, endearing, rough-cut heroine--the stoic courage to face the death of her mother after a hideous accident that also leaves her piano-playing hands in pain and permanently scarred.

Meanwhile, Billie Jo's silent, windblown father is literally decaying with grief and skin cancer before her very eyes. When she decides to flee the lingering ghosts and dust of her homestead and jump a train west, she discovers a simple but profound truth about herself and her plight. There are no tight, sentimental endings here--just a steady ember of hope that brightens Karen Hesse's exquisitely written and mournful tale. Hesse won the 1998 Newbery Award for this elegantly crafted, gut-wrenching novel, and her fans won't want to miss The Music of Dolphins or Letters from Rifka. (Ages 9 and older) --Gail Hudson

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