|Tiny piece of sky|
Author: Stout, Shawn K.
In 1939 Hagerstown, Maryland, eleven-year-old Frankie faces suspicion that her German-born father is a Nazi spy.
Kirkus Reviews (10/15/15)
School Library Journal (01/01/16)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/02/16)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 01/01/2016 Gr 4–6—It's the summer of 1939 in Hagerstown, MD, and there are big changes afoot in the Baum family. It is middle sister Joan's turn to spend the summer with Aunt Dottie, which leaves number three sister, Frankie, at home with perfect number one sister, Elizabeth. Frankie is not as perfect as Elizabeth and not quite as able to fit in as Joan but is the kind of girl who collects scabs, sings off-key in church, and does myriad other things that set her mother's nerves on edge. Patriarch Hermann decides that now is the time to fulfill his dream of owning a restaurant—the type of eatery that has entertainment and is a real part of the community. Everybody in the family will have to help in order to get the place shipshape for the projected opening on July fourth. The problem is that some folks in town don't like the idea of a family of German descent opening a business downtown—especially when Mr. Baum doesn't treat Mr. Sullen Waterford Price, president of the local chamber of commerce, with the respect he thinks he deserves. This piece of historical fiction is based on the author's own family story, and the passion comes across in the writing. Themes of prejudice, racism, family, and friendship are all explored through Frankie's eyes and in her voice. Fans of Augusta Scattergood's Glory Be (Scholastic, 2012) as well as those of Jeanne Birdsall's "Penderwicks" series (Knopf) will enjoy this slice of history. VERDICT A solid piece of historical fiction to add to middle grade collections.—Stacy Dillon, LREI, New York City - Copyright 2016 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.