In The Mighty Miss Malone (Lexile 760; Interest Level: Grades 3-6), Christopher Paul Curtis transports us to the 1930s and into the life of Deza Malone and her family as they struggle with the fall out of the Great Depression. This historical novel follows an African American family as they search for the father, who has gone missing after leaving to look for work. Deza tries to keep her family together, but her older brother leaves them to try to make a living singing, and Deza struggles to find her place in this new world.
I have many friends who have absolutely adored this book, but I have to admit that it was not one of my favorites. Perhaps I had a hard time with Deza's voice in this story, or perhaps it was just the wrong time for me to read it. Christopher Paul Curtis is a Newbery Award Winning Author (Bud, Not Buddy), so all of his books deserve a read. If you are interested in the time period following the Great Depression of 1929, or in African-American history, you should certainly give this book a try! (320 p.)
One of the reasons I became an elementary school librarian is so I can read children's books.