The Coretta Scott King Award-winning Gone Crazy in Alabama by Newbery Honor and New York Times bestselling author Rita Williams-Garcia tells the story of the Gaither sisters as they travel from the streets of Brooklyn to the rural South for the summer of a lifetime.
Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern are off to Alabama to visit their grandmother Big Ma and her mother, Ma Charles. Across the way lives Ma Charles's half sister, Miss Trotter. The two half sisters haven't spoken in years. As Delphine hears about her family history, she uncovers the surprising truth that's been keeping the sisters apart. But when tragedy strikes, Delphine discovers that the bonds of family run deeper than she ever knew possible.
Powerful and humorous, this companion to the award-winning One Crazy Summer and P.S. Be Eleven will be enjoyed by fans of the first two books, as well as by readers meeting these memorable sisters for the first time.
Readers who enjoy Christopher Paul Curtis's The Watsons Go to Birmingham and Jacqueline Woodson's Brown Girl Dreaming will find much to love in this book. Rita Williams-Garcia's books about Delphine, Vonetta, and Fern can also be read alongside nonfiction explorations of American history such as Jason Reynolds's and Ibram X. Kendi's books.
Each humorous, unforgettable story in this trilogy follows the sisters as they grow up during one of the most tumultuous eras in recent American history, the 1960s. Read the adventures of eleven-year-old Delphine and her younger sisters, Vonetta and Fern, as they visit their kin all over the rapidly changing nation--and as they discover that the bonds of family, and their own strength, run deeper than they ever knew possible.
"The Gaither sisters are an irresistible trio. Williams-Garcia excels at conveying defining moments of American society from their point of view." --Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Coretta Scott King Award winner * ALA Notable Book * School Library Journal Best Book of the Year * Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year * ALA Booklist Editors' Choice * Shelf Awareness Best Book of the Year * Washington Post Best Books of the Year * The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books Blue Ribbon Book * Three starred reviews * CCBC Choice * New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing * Amazon Best Book of the Year
- ISBN-13: 9780062215871
- ISBN-10: 0062215876
- Publisher: Quill Tree Books
- Publish Date: April 2015
- Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.8 x 1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 0.8 pounds
- Page Count: 304
- Reading Level: Ages 9-12
An Alabama summer
Almost-13-year-old Delphine, middle sister Vonetta and baby sister Fern Gaither are back in the final installment of the award-winning series by Rita Williams-Garcia. This time they’re spending the summer of 1969 in Alabama with their grandmother (Big Ma), great-grandmother (Ma Charles) and great-aunt (Miss Trotter).
Delphine is losing her grip on her sisters, and poor Big Ma can hardly keep her citified granddaughters in line. She blames their fresh behavior on their Black Panther mother and women’s libber stepmother. “One don’t eat chicken or ham. One don’t forgive. The other don’t iron. Just git, Delphine. Take your sisters and git.” But there is no place to git to. They head across the creek to visit Miss Trotter, who has plenty of family stories to tell. Half-sisters Big Ma and Miss Trotter do not speak to each other, except through the stories told to the younger generation.
It’s impossible to ignore the parallels between the Gaither sisters’ growing rift and the chasm between the elderly half-sisters. Delphine grows increasingly worried about her family, just wishing they could all get along under one roof. When danger comes to the family, she gets her wish—in a way.
The harrowing ending will have readers on the edges of their seats until the book’s satisfying resolution. Delphine might not be able to control her sisters, but she is a true sister: She’s there when needed.
Robin Smith is a second-grade teacher at the Ensworth School in Nashville, Tennessee. She also reviews for Kirkus and The Horn Book Magazine and has served on multiple award committees.