About The Book: Can a white girl feel at home on an Indian reservation?
Based on the author’s childhood experience in the early 1960s, this debut novel centers on Kitty, whose father is a government forester at Warm Springs Reservation, Oregon. Kitty is one of only two white kids in her class, and the Indian kids are keeping their distance. With time, Kitty becomes increasingly aware of the tensions and prejudices between Indians and whites, and of the past injustice and pain still very much alive on the reservation. Time also brings friendships and opportunities to make a difference.
First Line: "Station One, this is Sidwalter Lookout. Come in!" A woman's voice, strained and urgent, drags me out of sleep.
Awesome Passage: When we arrive at the playfield after lunch, there's a big knot of kids at the backstop. Baseball happens, every day, even when the wind is biting, like today.
What Others Are Saying: "Kitty’s discoveries and ethical dilemmas are age-and era-appropriate, the characters affectionately portrayed, rounded individuals."--Kirkus
"Based on the author's own experiences, this novel fills a gap in the historical fiction genre. Great for classroom discussion as well as independent reading." --School Library Journal
Awards: 2012 Washington State Book Award for middle grade/young adult2012 Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People
What I Thought: I've only read a few middle grade memoirs but one thing that I believe is crucial is an authentic voice. Noe definitely nails it which makes this not only believable but enjoyable. Kitty's challenges are universal; great jumping off points for further discussion. I especially appreciated the layers of bullying she exposed. I think we often simplify the subject into bullies and the bullied, but reality is much mor complex than that. I highly recommend this as a great read-aloud for parents and teachers.
About The Author:
Katherine Schlick Noe
Blog- Contributor of From The Mixed Up Files
Literature Circles Resource Center
Who: Katherine Schlick Noe is Professor of Education and Director of Literacy in the College of Education at Seattle University. A former high school English and reading teacher, she received her Ph.D. in Reading/Language Arts from the University of Washington. Katherine works with beginning teachers in the Master in Teaching Program and directs the master's degree program in Literacy for Special Needs, preparing reading specialists. —Seattle University
Why: The years at Warm Springs were pivotal for me, as they are for all children between the ages of seven and eleven. Something to Holdis grounded in universals. We all long to find a place to belong, to make friends, to feel connected and rooted. The book also explores a unique perspective of a non-Indian outsider’s growing awareness of prejudice, including her own. —The Fourth Musketeer
Be sure to check back because part of my NW author focus will be interviews and giveaways so don't miss them. Next week The Ring of Leilani by Annie Crawford!