Bound To Stay Bound

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 Harbor me
 Author: Woodson, Jacqueline

 Publisher:  Nancy Paulsen (2018)

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 176 p.,  21 cm

 BTSB No: 964704 ISBN: 9780399252525
 Ages: 10-14 Grades: 5-9

 Subjects:
 Friendship -- Fiction
 Family problems -- Fiction
 School stories
 African Americans -- Fiction
 Latinos (U.S.) -- Fiction

Price: $21.58

Summary:
When six students are chosen to participate in a weekly talk with no adults allowed, they discover that when they're together, it's safe to share the hopes and fears they have to hide from the rest of the world.

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Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: MG
   Reading Level: 4.10
   Points: 4.0   Quiz: 196472
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: 3-5
   Reading Level: 3.50
   Points: 10.0   Quiz: 75105

Reviews:
   Kirkus Reviews (+) (07/01/18)
   School Library Journal (08/01/18)
   Booklist (+) (07/01/18)
 The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (00/09/18)
 The Hornbook (00/11/18)

Full Text Reviews:

Booklist - 07/01/2018 *Starred Review* Six fifth- and sixth-graders, all in a special class for those who learn differently, are suddenly given, by their beloved teacher, an extra hour of safe space—an empty classroom where they are told they can talk about anything or nothing. At first, it’s nothing. Then, Haley, the book’s narrator, describes how each child begins to unfold. Esteban’s story demands to be told first; Immigration Services have taken his father away. The others lend sympathy and support, and then, over the course of a school year, more confidences are shared. Ashton, one of the school’s few white kids, is bullied. Amari sketches guns and worries about being shot. Puerto Rican Tiago struggles with being American, yet not American. Haley’s own story is intertwined with that of her best friend, Holly. Haley’s red hair comes from her father, but he’s in jail and Haley’s mother is dead; an uncle cares for the hyperactive Holly. The plot, at times, creaks, especially the setup. But the magic is in the writing. Woodson tells stories torn from headlines but personalizes them with poetry and memories, blunting their trauma with understanding and love. Haley’s history weaves in and out, drawing readers close. These children become each other’s safe harbors, and Woodson brilliantly shows readers how to find the connections we all need. - Copyright 2018 Booklist.

School Library Journal - 08/01/2018 Gr 4–6—In sixth grade, Haley is part of a special class of six kids that include Holly, Esteban, Amari, Tiago, and Ashton. On the first Friday of the school year, Ms. Laverne tells them to grab their books and follow her. She leads them to what used to be the art room and gives them some simple directions. They are supposed to sit in a circle and talk. The students are confused at first. What are they supposed to talk about? Ms. Laverne assures them they can talk about whatever they want to and need to. The next Friday, Haley comes in with a recorder, telling her friends it's so that they won't forget each other. Through the "recordings," readers get to know each of the six classmates through their own words. Each character reveals the difficult things they're balancing in their lives, whether it's an incarcerated parent, a dead parent, a family split apart by immigration policies, a father who lost his job, or their daily struggles with racism and microaggressions. Woodson's spare, lyrical, and evocative prose carries the story seamlessly, weaving in themes of justice and family, friendship and courage. VERDICT This is a timely and beautifully written story that should be on library shelves everywhere.—Stacy Dillon, LREI, New York - Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

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