In the summer of 1963, nine-year-old spitfire Starla Claudelle runs away from her strict grandmother's Mississippi home. Starla hasn't seen her momma since she was three - that's when Lulu left for Nashville to become a famous singer. Starla's daddy works on an oil rig in the Gulf, so Mamie, with her tsk-tsk sounds and her bitter refrain of "Lord, give me strength," is the nearest thing to family Starla has. After being put on restriction yet again for her sassy mouth, Starla is caught sneaking out for the Fourth of July parade. She fears Mamie will make good on her threat to send Starla to reform school, so Starla walks to the outskirts of town, and just keeps walking....
If she can get to Nashville and find her momma, then all that she promised will come true: Lulu will be a star. Daddy will come to live in Nashville, too. And her family will be whole and perfect. Walking a lonely country road, Starla accepts a ride from Eula, a black woman traveling alone with a white baby. The trio embarks on a road trip that will change Starla's life forever. She sees for the first time life as it really is - as she reaches for a dream of how it could one day be.
©2013 Susan Crandall (P)2013 Dreamscape Media, LLC
"Starla's fiery independence makes her a likable narrator." (Publishers Weekly)
"It's not easy to keep such a young narrator convincing for more than 300 pages.... Readers will take to Starla and be caught up in her story." (Booklist)
"A coming-of-age story as well as a luminous portrait of courage and the bonds of friendship.... Susan Crandall tells young Starla's story with pitch-perfect tone, evoking 1963 Mississippi and its struggles with a deft hand. I laughed and cried at Starla's keen observances of life and family and the sometimes blurred edges of justice. Like Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird and Kathryn Stockett's The Help, Whistling Past the Graveyard is destined to become a classic." (Karen White, New York Times best-selling author)
What a wonderful sweet coming of age story. With the flavor of Kathryn Stockett’s The Help, I was hanging on each and every twist and turn throughout this book. More so than many detective novels I read this year that were advertised as thrillers.
Set in Mississippi in 1963 Starla lives with her strict grandmother. She thinks she has found a greener pasture only to find there is no place like home. The characters are endearing, spirited and complex. The women are strong, the children are gutsy and the best men are those that are tender and thoughtful. The author relays a time and feeling in a way that transforms the reader to a different age.
Amy Rubinate is the one with the pitch perfect tone. I think she did a fabulous job with all the characters.
I enjoyed each and every hour and minute.
This is my granddaughter's picture! She is my love.
I hesitated getting this book but I am very pleased. It was so wonderful to see the past civil rights problems involved with a young white child and the accidental friendship with a black woman. The girl has run away from an abusive grandmother and the black woman has killed her abusive husband to protect the child she just met.
There is anger, suspense, dreams, broken hearts, strength, wonder, fear, happiness, and everything else you find the the best books.
I would listen to this book again because it tells about a time that seems like yesterday. Nine year old Starla lives with her Mamie because her daddy works on an oil rig in the Gulf. Her momma has gone to Nashville to be a famous singer. A lot happens when Starla decides to go find her momma and gets picked up by a woman named Eula.
The performance is spot on and the characters are so real that I imagine people go looking for them in Cayuga Springs. I look forward to more from this author.
When Starla tells her adventures near the end of the story.
There were many.
This is a really good story of southern life through a young girls eyes which is set in the 1960's.
Starla's personality and how her character grew throughout the story.
The Help, Saving CeeCee Honeycutt, The Kitchen House. Similar settings and issues but a unique story.
SPOILER ALERT: when Porter stood up to and broke free of Mamie. Creating change for Starla and himself.
They all had been through so much. but they never lost hope and things turned out ok towards the end. So many times in the book when th ings were near impossible and they never lost their faith or hope. So hard to pick just one moment.
This was an amazing story with entertaining characters. At times it was difficult to read. But as I said these people never lost hope. worthy of a reread imo. I am hoping to see more from Me Crandall and Starla. I highly recommend this
no I wouldn't, the story is told by a 9 year old girl named Starla...the things she says and does are not plausible for a child that age. The story is not very believable either for this genre and didn't fit together well.
I'm not sure if I have or not but the narrator is excellent, that's not the problem here.
I found myself rolling my eyes more and more as the story progressed and I started skipping ahead about 2/3 into the book...
Yes, because the narrator, Amy Rubinate, was awesome! I love her voice and want to hear more from her!
The fireball of a main character was a hoot!
Her beautiful southern accent made me proud to be a southern girl!
I would love to get to know Starla even better! She will be a fabulous grownup. Let's hear from Starla the teenager!
I enjoyed this book from the first sentence to the end! As soon as I finished I wanted to find another book written by the Author Susan Crandall.
This book has been the best I've heard so far. The performance was great, it made me feel like I was right there with the characters.
I was really hoping for more from this book. The main character made me want to spank her and tell her to keep quiet. The writing about the times was almost like they were trying to outdo The Help. I really was disappointed, good books are supposed to encourage a reaction when you read. However I could not get involved with these characters, they just did not have enough depth.
no I haven't, but one book that I do not like does not mean I won't try others.
Yeah she's ok.
I was just let down after reading all the glowing reviews.
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