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|How high the moon|
Author: Parsons, Karyn
Eleven-year-old Ella seeks information about her father while enjoying a visit with her mother, a jazz singer, in Boston in 1944, then returns to the harsh realities of segregated, small-town South Carolina.
Kirkus Reviews (+) (12/15/18)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (00/01/19)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 02/01/2019 Ella, 12, lives in Alcolu, South Carolina. It’s 1943, so segregation is in full force. But Ella’s mother is in Boston, working in the navy yards by day and singing in jazz clubs at night, and when Ella goes to live with her, the girl’s eyes are opened to a different sort of life. Though the story is Ella’s, her cousins Henry and Myrna, also raised by the trio’s grandparents, share the narration. The story is crammed with issues: Ella’s search for her white father; the excitement and disappointments of living with her mother; the arrest and execution of Myrna’s boyfriend, George, for the murder of two girls; even a hint of a same-sex relationship between Ella’s mother and her roommate. The book is at its best when the focus is on Ella. Her lively first-person narrative holds readers’ attention, making Henry and Myrna’s appearance at times a distraction. Despite a need for streamlining (and more emotional heft to George’s story), this has some wonderful voices and character interactions, and an evocative cover will draw readers. - Copyright 2019 Booklist.