Customer Reviews for

Out of the Dust

Average Rating 4
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(180)

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(16)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

11 out of 16 people found this review helpful.

The Book out of the dust

Out of the Dust is about a young girl named Billie Jo. She lives on the dry flat lands of Oklahoma with her mother and father. Her mother dies giving birth to what would have been her first sibling. Unfortunatly her new born baby brother dies also. What is wost is that ...
Out of the Dust is about a young girl named Billie Jo. She lives on the dry flat lands of Oklahoma with her mother and father. Her mother dies giving birth to what would have been her first sibling. Unfortunatly her new born baby brother dies also. What is wost is that the only thing to calm her done is to play the piano which she can't do because her hands are burnt. Her father does not talk to her any more and she can't get over her mother dieing. so she leaves her dad in the middle of the night to catch a trian. But after a few days she calls he dad and tells him were she is and that she is coming home on the next train. After that they were like a family again and there wheat started growing. Billie Jo ends up going to the doctor and her gives her medicine so she can use her hands again.

I would give this book 5 stars. I like it because you can really tell what the charectors are saying doing and feeling. It isn't a fairy tale or somthing like that it tells what happens in real life today. I feel like I am in the blazzing sun of running away with Billie Jo. I loved this book but make sure you have4 a box of tissues by your side.

posted by 945923 on February 5, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

10 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

Out of the Dust

Out of the Dust

This is a very touching story written in all poetry. It features a lot of metaphors, like comparing her piano to her mother. I think this book is appropriate for ages 10-13 because you can relate to the characters better at that age. My favorite p...
Out of the Dust

This is a very touching story written in all poetry. It features a lot of metaphors, like comparing her piano to her mother. I think this book is appropriate for ages 10-13 because you can relate to the characters better at that age. My favorite poem is "On Stage" on page 13 because I play piano and I know how it feels to be on stage. Some parts were boring, but overall I thought it was a good book.

posted by 5373376 on December 3, 2010

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 1, 2010

    The best book ever!

    This book is about a 14 year old girl named Billi Jo Kelby.Billi lived on a farm in Okahama during the dust bowl.She lived with her mother that was going to have a baby and her father. They were trying to grow some wheat but with all the dust it never grew.One day her father left a pail of kerosene next to the stove and her mother was making coffee thenwhen she poured it the stove was turning on fire and her mother went out side to call Billi's father and Billi's was tring to hrlp so she took the pail and was going to trow it out side next her mother went walking trow the door and Billi drop the pail on her mom by accsident and her mom turned on fire.Then the docter came and help.Her mom was so burned that she coul'nt move.Then a few day later her mom died when giving bith to the baby.The baby had died too.
    I would reccommend this book to a friend because this is a real story that happened to someone.And its a great way to know how life was back then.I liked this book because it show the life of this girl and it shows how hard life was back then. Anther book that i would read by this author would be "Just Juice".

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  • Posted August 31, 2010

    out of the dust

    out of the dust was out standing book. I would recomend this book to all people who like books involving life in a past time.this book is extemly easy to read for those who dont like to read.th subtitles keep you aware of whats going on.the book its self is amazing.
    the things I truely loved about the book was it showed how a poor family can still help those worse then themselves.They also stay as a family. the story was about how a talented girl lives through adust storm losing her mom ,an up coming baby and burns her hands in the proses. this burn prevented her from using her piano witch was the only thing connecting her to her mom.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2010

    "Out of the Dust" Review

    Out of the Dust is about a 14 year old girl named Billie Jo. Billie Jo lives with her mother and father on a small farm in Oklahoma. Billie Jo's mother died one day after kerosene was accidentally spilled all over her. Billie Jo was injured when the kerosene spilled too. Her hands got burned and they hurt her everyday. Billie Jo always felt very trapped in Oklahoma. She felt that she needed to get away from her life. She later discovers that she can't leave because she would be leaving everything, her mother, father and her baby brother.

    I really liked Out of the Dust. If I were to rate it on a scale from 1 to 5, I would give it it a 4. Some things in the story were very confusing. One thing would be going on and then all of a sudden it would just randomly change to something else. I really enjoyed how Billie Jo starts to see the positive things in life. I would definitely recommend this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2009

    Good Book

    My favorite poem in the book is Dust Storm(pg. 142) because it shows that even though Billy Jo and her father aren't talking they still care for each other. This book is appropriate for teenagers and adults because there are some pretty depressing things that younger kids wouldn't get. Repetition is used a lot in the book and it is used very well. It makes certain poems stand out and be important. Overall I liked this book because you can see how people had to live during this time and the book has a very good ending.

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  • Posted November 9, 2009

    Book Review: Out of the Dust

    Delanie Bussard
    Mrs. Vorhis
    Adv Comp
    9 November 2009
    Book Review: Out of the Dust

    Out of the Dust is great nonfiction written by Karen Hesse. This novel tells a lot about the era of the depression and the struggles people went through just to survive day by day. It is about how the main character, Billie Jo, loses most everything that she has and has to rely on herself to get through. She is blamed for the death of her mother, baby brother, and her father is a loner. She is badly burned and her dream of playing piano for FDR someday is shot. Billie Jo must fight the dust and must use her strengths to get through the hard times that are sent her way. It is an amazing novel about strength and determination, and so much can be done by someone at such a young age.

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  • Posted August 22, 2009

    Great Book for Summer Reading

    This book is a terrific introduction into a mid-west family living in the depression during the 1930's. It's structured in a poem style, and really hits the emotional points of this family. It's a fairly quick read and perfectly suited for a 6th, 7th or 8th grader. Many parts to pick from for report writing. We found it fun to read together as a family and discuss. It was very eye opening for my daughter to see how others lived during various periods.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 7, 2008

    Emotional, great, somewhat depressing

    This is a great book! Very emotional and makes you appreciate your life. It was really depressing at times but overall it had a good ending and left you in suspence.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2007

    A reviewer

    reads very quickly, great book, would highly recommend!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2007

    Out of the Dust...... A Story You Can't Put Down.

    The story Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse is a magnificent story of a young girl named Billy Jo. She has to go through millions of challenges and the one thing she loves to do (playing the piano) is the one thing impossible to do because of her injured hands. The setting of this book is August of 1934 through December of 1935 in the Oklahoma desert. It tells about all of the events happening during this time period, including her life without a mother. Billy Joe (who is the narrator) is a 14 year old girl who has to take on the drought and learns to deal with the dangers of nature. The little farm that she lives on has not received rain for many months and there is little left to survive on. One day, Billy Joe is forced to walk home to her little house in a horrible dust storm. After her rough time struggling to get home, her lungs get filled up with loads of dust. She gets very ill and to make matters worse, the dust storm just continues. Billy Jo and her father have to clean the house daily, find food not covered in dust and even deal with family problems. It is a fabulous story because I think a lot of people can relate to the actions of Billy Jo and her feelings. This story includes many valuable themes such as family, bravery and trust. I would definitely recommend this book to others and I know you would feel the same way after you read this loving story. It teaches you lessons of bravery and family that you can take with you and incorporate into your everyday life. This book reminds the reader to treasure what means the most and value the love of family.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2007

    Good Book

    'Out of the Dust' is an interesting book. Karen Ness tells a sad story of a young girl who needs to find something to make her feel better. One thing that makes her feel better is playing the piano, but it can't be done due to her wounded hands. This 1998 Newberry Medal book is sad, but shows that you can find peace. It was a good book, but not one of my favorites.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2007

    Read it

    Out of the dust by Karen Hesse is a fantastic book. I would give it a four out of five. The reason is, it is very sad and it has plenty of deaths in it. This is a story about a girl named, Billie Jo, who lives through the dust bowl. She has a Mom, Dad, and soon a baby brother. This book is a poem. But, it's not really a poem for me. You could just think of it as a book with not so many words. I can't really tell you that many thing, because it will spoil the book for you. If you want to learn more about Billie Jo, read Out of the Dust!!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 28, 2007

    a very sad but good book

    Out of the Dust is a book of mixed emotions that is about a girl named Billie Jo who lives in Oklahoma during the Dust Bowl. She lives with her father and mother. They own a farm,but have a lot of trouble with it. Billie Jo has to go through many obsticles to survive. Bille Jo desperatly wants to go somewhere else. Somewhere Out of the Dust.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2007

    Out of the Dust

    Out of the dust is written very different then your average everyday novel. This book is written in a poem form. Every chapter is a different season that they go through, so alot happends in each chapter and it seems each chapter has its own mini problems formed because of the huge problem. Karen Hesse's Out of the dust is a very touching novel, with a wonderful plot on how Billie Jo deals with loss, but mostly because this is a book about a real event that happened in the United States.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2006

    Very sweet

    I read this book many years ago as a child. I enjoy historical-fiction and found this story to be very sweet. I would recommend this to all children.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2006

    Poetry that is worth reading

    Billie Joe is your average girl growing up in the panhandle. Before she was born her father wanted a boy, that could help with the wheat crops. However, what he got was a little girl that looked just like him, so she got the name of the boy that her father had dreamed of. She helped her mother around the house, and played the piano in her spare time. She even began to travel with Mad Dog, a local musician, and made some extra money. The dust in her town was overwhelming and completely covered everything. There was the constant cleaning of the house, even the food they ate was covered in dust. Crops could barely prosper from the long drought, the dust burying the wheat or blowing it away. Life was hard, but it soon began to get worse. After a tragic accident, Billie Joe's life changed forever. Things got to the point, that she had enough and ranaway by catching a ride on a train. She soon came to realize that, 'Getting away, it wasn't any better. Just different. And lonely. Lonelier than the wind. Emptier than the sky. More silent than the dust, and piled in drifts between me and my father.' She had realized that while she hated the dust she had become apart of her. Karen Hesse grew up in Baltimore, Maryland and from an early age had a passion for writing. She attended Towson College as a theater major and after 2 years she had enough. She transfered to the University of Maryland, and earned a B.A. in English with double minors in Psychology and Anthropology. Out of the Dust was written in 1997 and earned in 1998, earn the Newbery Medal. This was a lovely story written in poetry form. The details, which are few are enough to place a picture in your mind, and the taste of dust in your mouth. Although we may have no idea what it is like to live in the panhandle, we do know what it is like to want to getaway and start a new life. But soon we find that home is where are heart is. The book is a great read, and heart felt. The main character Billie Joe, soon becomes apart of you. Grade Level: 5th Hesse, Karen. Out of the Dust. New York: Scholastic, 1997.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 26, 2006

    Newberry Medal: Out of the Dust

    Karen Hesse has received many awards for this book, including the Newberry Medal in 1998. She got the idea to write this book from an article in a magazine article about the KKK in Vermont in the 1920s. This book is an intimate book written in a series of poems. This is a touching story full of emotions for Billy Jo. In a series of poems, Billy Jo relates the hardships of the Depression. Billy Jo¿s father refuses to abandon his farm. However, Billy Jo longs to be a musician and travel the country. Billy Jo is eager to ¿Walk my way West/ and make myself to home in that distant place/of green vines and promise.¿ However, this does not happen because of a tragic fire taking her mother¿s life. Billy Jo endures many struggles and hardships, including hunger. Hesse, Karen. Out of the Dust. New York: Scholastic, 1997. Reading level: Ages 11-13

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 27, 2006

    great book

    Shawna Wyatt Book Review Out of the Dust Authored By: Karen Hesse Out of the Dust is a very good book. It would be a good book for middle school ages students. It is wrote in verses instead of paragraph form and also in a dairy form which makes it a easy read. It is a book of learning about yourself and going through tough times at a young age. It is inspiring to someone going through that awkward, middle school, puberty stage. Karen Hesse began writing in early elementary school due to teachers who encouraged her.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2006

    read this book today you will love it!

    If you want to read a touching story you should read Out of the Dust by: Karen Hesse.Out of the Dust is about a small girl called Billy Joe. Billy Joe losses her mother and brother in a accident. People in her town think that accident was all her fault. From that day her life was miserable. All she though was of her mother and brother. This story is set in a desert. In that desert there was a small village that was the small village. That small village was the one who blamed Billy Joe. The town really made Billy Joe feels bad. She cried and cried. Her father just stared at her like if she had killed them. Billy Joe was really upset. All she did was staring at the window when her father went in her room. After Christmas her life changed she was happier. I really loved the author¿s way of expressing. It really told the way of Billy Joe¿s life. And I liked all the really sad moments it felt so real. If you like to read this is a good book for you. If you want to know more about Out of the Dust check it out or buy it today.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 4, 2006

    IT WAS AMAZING!

    Out Of The Dust was a great book, i can't even explain it in words how good it is!I read it 4 times but to me it never dies out, even if i know what happends next the sadness and pain never leaves me but more comes.It's about this girl named Billie Jo, she was named that because her father wanted a boy but he got as Karen Hesse worded 'A long-legged girl with a wide mouth and cheekbones like bicycle handles...'.She lived in a place were it never rained,were dust was everywere, and were you made very little money but one thing that always made Billie Jo shine was the piano. There was a fire because of her father,her mother and Billie Jo got burned. Her mother died and Billie Jo's brand new baby brother, he didn't live long though. Her father doesn't talk to her anymore and the blame of her mothers and baby brothers death is all on her shoulders. This book is so sad and it made me cry and i guarentee you will love it,the way Karen Hesse wrote, and the story itself!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2006

    Four Star Read

    Close your eyes. Now open them. Your bare feet lay upon a soft brown powder. Now look at your surroundings dust covers everything in site. You are in the Dust Bowl. Out of the Dust is historical fiction that potrays life in the panhandle of Oklahoma during that time period. Tears will roll down your cheecks and your hands will shake with worry. Come and experience the four star read and experience the Dust Bowl throught the eyes of one young girl.

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