One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia is set in Oakland, California during the summer of 1968. Three sisters are sent by their dad and grandmother to meet their mother, a woman who 11 year old Delphine, the eldest, just barely remembers. Any hopes for a syrupy reunion are quickly dashed by the cold reception they receive from Cecile, poet and activist. Delphine puts her little sisters first and takes charge as best she can. Their month will include daily breakfast and day camp at the local Black Panther community center, an exciting excursion to San Francisco and trying to decipher the strange behavior of this distant woman who is their mother. Multi award winner, this book is full of great characters set during a tumultuous time in our history. A top pick for any reader.
Trash by Andy Mulligan is the story of three very poor friends struggling to survive in a third world country. They are trash pickers by trade, a life clinging to a thread of hope that you might find something valuable thrown away by the luckier members of the society. Well, one day Raphael and Gardo do and their whole world changes. Told in alternating first person chapters, different people touched by this discovery tell their part in this mystery-adventure involving thievery, deceit, love of family, true friendship and millions of dollars. Be sure to read all the way to the end including the author's note on "Book-Codes."
13 year old Jason Blake tells you his story in Anything But Typical by Nora Baskin. Jason is a gifted writer, a keen observer of human behavior and severely autistic. You may have read about autism; you may know someone who is autistic; you may have discussed autism in class. Let Jason tell you what it's really like. Through his narrative you will experience his daily challenges with things we take for granted. You will begin to understand his frustrations, his limitations with time, space and perception. If you read carefully, you will begin to see and understand the world through his eyes. Be prepared to better understand autism but also fitting in. A powerful story for any reader.