Family Tree

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Overview

Eleven-year-old Tyler Stoudt starts sixth grade off on the wrong foot. She has Ms. Custer, the toughest teacher in school, who has announced that the schoolwork for the year will revolve around one project: a family tree. Tyler doesn't have a family tree--she has only Papa. As Papa said, her family tree was "chop down and burnt up. " But Tyler decides to do her best on the family tree project. Does she have grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles? Tyler wants to know, but she ...
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Overview

Eleven-year-old Tyler Stoudt starts sixth grade off on the wrong foot. She has Ms. Custer, the toughest teacher in school, who has announced that the schoolwork for the year will revolve around one project: a family tree. Tyler doesn't have a family tree--she has only Papa. As Papa said, her family tree was "chop down and burnt up. " But Tyler decides to do her best on the family tree project. Does she have grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles? Tyler wants to know, but she is afraid of what she might find out.

While trying to construct her family tree for a school assignment, eleven-year-old Tyler discovers her Amish heritage and other secrets about her family's past.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
When a sixth grader has to research her family history, she discovers her reticent widower father's Amish background and the sacrifices he made to marry her mother. PW said, "Ayres delivers an intriguing plot and deftly paints a self-reliant heroine on a mission to find the truth." Ages 8-12. Dec. r
School Library Journal
Gr 4-6-When sixth-grader Tyler learns that her family tree will be the basis for the entire school year's work, the closeness between her and her strict, taciturn father is tested. The girl's investigations take her back in time through her dead mother's books and journals. Her father reveals painful memories from the time that his wife was killed in a car accident and his daughter was saved as a premature baby. Tyler also learns that her father lied to her mother's family out of fear of losing his baby, and that he gave up his Amish faith and family in order to marry the woman he loved in the first place. This is a touching story of a child's discovery of the parent she never knew and her reestablishment of long-severed family ties. Unfortunately, the setup is pretty hard to buy-it's all a little too tender and implausible. However, much of interest about the Amish religion is incorporated into the story without glorifying or degrading the realistic characters portrayed. Similarly, Tyler's teacher, friends, and classmates interact convincingly. For Ayres, this is a promising debut in spite of the far-fetched bits. -Carol A. Edwards, Minneapolis Public Library
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780440411932
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 11/28/1997
  • Series: Yearling Series
  • Pages: 165
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Lexile: 580L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.16 (w) x 7.69 (h) x 0.46 (d)

Meet the Author

Katherine Ayres is the author of Family Tree, which has been named to several state award lists, and North by Night: A Story of the Underground Railroad. She is a founding member of the Playwright’s Lab at the Pittsburgh Public Theater. She teaches writing at Chatham College, where she also coordinates the Master of Arts program in children’s and adolescent writing.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2012

    Awesome book

    I read this book at school for a group thing and i have to admit it was a very good book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2013

    Test

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 18, 2012

    Roxy

    Sits on her plush matress and fingers her white fleece comforter. Hugs one of her hot pink fuzzy pillows that says Roxy on it. Stares at the one window on the pale blue walls. Gets up and looks through the purple and blue bead curtains. Then walks over to her light brown wood desk and touches her kitten notebook. She turns off the ocean lamp and goes back to her bed. Turns on the small tv that sits on a matching dresser. Stares at the picture of her and her cousin in the turquoise frame inlaid with crystals. Flips the calendar to June and the picture is micky and minnie mouse. Turns the channel to old disney cartoons and settles on her bed with her nook, reads Warriors: The Last Hope.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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