©1997 Karen Hesse; (P)2008 Random House, Inc.
Out of the Dust is a quick read that creates a sympathetic reader. I love that it is written as prose.
Since it's written as a journal, you really only get the inside look at Billy Jo. She's spunky. She's a survivor. She's impossible not to love.
Absolutely! I have already recommended it to a friend. I am studying to be an elementary teacher and I had to read some Newbery Award/ or honor books for my elementary literature class. I wasn't real excited about reading "Out of the Dust", as I thought it would be dry as dust. Boy was I wrong! This is an excellent story! Very realistic! It dives into some deep feelings, so I would probably use this for older elementary or middle school children. It is written in a poetic format, but comes across as though it was a series of journal recordings that take you through about 1 1/2 years of this girls life.
My favorite character was Louise. I liked how she gently made her entrance into the family with great sensitivity.
Yes, I listened to it in one sitting, the recording was under 3 hours. I guess I could have spread it out over several sittings. As a teacher, I might be fun to read a little bit each day to the class and spread it over a week or two. Maybe use it when you are trying to focus on journaling. This way you can show the class how journaling can turn into a wonderful story.
Listened to this with our kids for American History purposes. This is a very well told story. The characters are well-developed and many moments are dramatic and haunting. This gives children and adults a great view of what it was like to be a child in a family during the 1930s in the dust bowl areas of the US.
Authenticity of characters
surviving the dust bowl years, a young woman's story
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