Louisiana's Song [NOOK Book]

Overview

Livy Two is happy that Daddy is finally out of his coma, but the befuddled man who comes home is not the daddy the Weems family once knew. He forgets their names, he wanders off?he won?t even touch his beloved banjo. Set in Appalachia in 1963, this heartwarming, and heart-wrenching, follow-up to Gentle?s Holler is narrated by the irrepressible Livy Two, and traces the ups and downs of her large mountain family. Shy and awkward 11-year-old Louise (Louisiana) becomes the reluctant hero as she develops a talent for ...
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Louisiana's Song

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Overview

Livy Two is happy that Daddy is finally out of his coma, but the befuddled man who comes home is not the daddy the Weems family once knew. He forgets their names, he wanders off—he won’t even touch his beloved banjo. Set in Appalachia in 1963, this heartwarming, and heart-wrenching, follow-up to Gentle’s Holler is narrated by the irrepressible Livy Two, and traces the ups and downs of her large mountain family. Shy and awkward 11-year-old Louise (Louisiana) becomes the reluctant hero as she develops a talent for painting, takes care of Daddy, and shows a surprised Livy Two that sometimes the quietest sibling turns out to be the strongest.
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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Ashley Mentzer
Louisiana's Song is a strong Southern tale of family ties. Louisiana, or Louise, is a resourceful girl who brings light into the hardships of the book. The book is foggy at times and also a little hard to get into. Although the book can get muddy, the real emotions behind the characters' motives fuel the story. The ending was weaker than expected, but it also left the reader wanting more.
VOYA - Diane Tuccillo
Things get more difficult each day for the Weems family in the 1960s North Carolina mountains since the car accident that left Daddy in a coma. When he awakens and improves, twelve-year-old Livy Two Weems and her nine siblings soon realize that the man who comes home to them, Mama, and Grandma Horace is not the same talented musician and imaginative father who once wrote songs and took them on fairy hunts in the woods. His severe brain damage will take time and patience to overcome. Mama and Grandma Horace struggle to make ends meet, and despite efforts by the eldest children, including Livy Two, to work at jobs and contribute to the cause, they face leaving the home they love in Maggie to relocate in the factory town of Enka. Readers familiar with Gentle's Holler (Viking, 2005) will pick up where it ended, but those new to the story will need persistence to unravel the myriad characters and figure out their roles. They will soon discover a well-crafted and moving family story with interesting personalities and relationships bringing the era of President Kennedy's assassination to life through Livy Two's clear and true voice. The book's title comes from a song she wrote about her introspective and artistically skilled sister, Louisiana. She sends this song and ones by her father to a music producer in Nashville, without results-at least in this part of the story. This unresolved situation and others indicate a sequel.
Kirkus Reviews
In an engaging sequel to Gentle's Holler (2005), Madden continues the story of the Weems family, and brings painfully shy and artistically talented 11-year-old Louise, the fourth of ten children, into sharper focus: "It's only folks that scare Louise, not storms or snakes." Set in Appalachia in 1963, the family struggles to cope when their daddy comes home from the Rip Van Winkle rest home after eight months; he's slowly recovering from a car wreck and coma, but suffers from auditory hallucinations, has trouble with language and sometimes wanders off. "Who knew that a quieter Daddy would be the loudest sound in the world?" Twelve-year-old Livy Two again provides a poignant and spirited lens from which to view their hardscrabble yet loving family life. Resourceful as ever, she's determined to figure out a way to help her family so they won't have to leave their beloved mountain holler and move to their grandmother's house in "Enka-Stinka," next to a textile plant. This second of three Maggie Valley stories is a celebration of artists and words, and, though somewhat idealized, Madden's fluid and heartfelt storytelling will leave young readers looking forward to more. (Fiction. 10+)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781440678370
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 5/17/2007
  • Series: Maggie Valley Trilogy
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 736,816
  • Age range: 10 years
  • File size: 251 KB

Meet the Author

Kerry Madden has written plays, journalism (Los Angeles Times, Salon, Five Points: A Journal of Literature and Art, and Sierra Club Magazine), and six books including Offsides, a New York Library Pick for 1997, and Writing Smarts, a guide to creative writing published by American Girl. In 2005 she turned her hand to children’s literature with Gentle's Holler, the first installment in what became the award-winning Maggie Valley Trilogy, Viking Children's Books. It earned starred reviews in both Kirkus and Publisher’s Weekly, was named a “Pick” by both the New York and the Chicago Public Libraries, and was the featured children’s book of North Carolina at the National Book Festival. The next book in the trilogy, Louisiana’s Song (2007) was equally well received, being named a Bank Street College Book of the Year and a finalist for several other awards. The third installment, Jessie’s Mountain, was published in 2008 to strong reviews. Most recently Madden published UpClose Harper Lee as part of Viking's UpClose Series and received a starred Kirkus for this biography. She has taught at the University of Tennessee, Ningbo University in China, UCLA, and elsewhere, and has visited schools across the country as a guest author. She has just accepted a new job at the University of Alabama in Birmingham as a professor of Creative Writing beginning the fall of 2009.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 3, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Reviewed by Carrie Spellman for TeensReadToo.com

    It's been a long time since Tom Weems has been to the mountain holler they call home. A lot has changed since his accident. Grandma Horace has moved up from the city, but it seems like all she does is argue with everyone. With ten kids to feed and clothe, even Grandma Horace's money doesn't stretch very far. All of the kids who can are doing their best to contribute. Emmett's off with their great uncle working at the new amusement park. He sends back whatever money Uncle Buddy doesn't "borrow." Livy Two is sure that she could sell some of the songs she's been writing, if she could only get the address for the man who used to read her Daddy's songs. She's also sure that her sister, Louisiana, could sell some paintings, if only she wasn't so shy. <BR/><BR/>When Daddy comes home all of the kids expect things will go back to normal. But, Daddy isn't quite the same Daddy he was before. He doesn't seem to remember much of anything. He gets words confused a lot and he won't even touch his banjo. He has a radio playing in his head that no one else can hear. He's not even living in the house. They fixed up an old shed for him to stay in. Louise painted it for him. <BR/><BR/>Louisiana would much rather stay at home and paint and help Daddy than go to school. It's not something Livy Two really gets, but she's very protective of her sister. In fact, until recently, Livy Two was Louise's only friend. But now she's made a new friend, and Livy Two isn't quite sure how to feel about it. <BR/><BR/>She doesn't have a whole lot of time to worry, since Grandma is trying to convince their mom to move them all into the city. Between that, Daddy, Emmett being gone, Louise's new life, and talk about sending Gentle away to a special school for the blind, Livy Two doesn't think her life will ever be quite right again. <BR/><BR/>This is quite simply and beautifully a story about life. It's set in a very specific place and time, but you slide into that space so easily. After reading this for a few hours straight, cars and microwaves were quite a shock! Life isn't always about huge moments, sometimes it's just smaller things, one after another. And you just keep going. It's how you go, and the attitude you have that shows the world who you are. This book is about Louisiana, through Livy Two's eyes, and it speaks volumes for both of them.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2007

    A reviewer

    It's been a long time since Tom Weems has been to the mountain holler they call home. A lot has changed since his accident. Grandma Horace has moved up from the city, but it seems like all she does is argue with everyone. With ten kids to feed and clothe, even Grandma Horace's money doesn't stretch very far. All of the kids who can are doing their best to contribute. Emmett's off with their great uncle working at the new amusement park. He sends back whatever money Uncle Buddy doesn't 'borrow.' Livy Two is sure that she could sell some of the songs she's been writing, if she could only get the address for the man who used to read her Daddy's songs. She's also sure that her sister, Louisiana, could sell some paintings, if only she wasn't so shy. When Daddy comes home all of the kids expect things will go back to normal. But, Daddy isn't quite the same Daddy he was before. He doesn't seem to remember much of anything. He gets words confused a lot and he won't even touch his banjo. He has a radio playing in his head that no one else can hear. He's not even living in the house. They fixed up an old shed for him to stay in. Louise painted it for him. Louisiana would much rather stay at home and paint and help Daddy than go to school. It's not something Livy Two really gets, but she's very protective of her sister. In fact, until recently, Livy Two was Louise's only friend. But now she's made a new friend, and Livy Two isn't quite sure how to feel about it. She doesn't have a whole lot of time to worry, since Grandma is trying to convince their mom to move them all into the city. Between that, Daddy, Emmett being gone, Louise's new life, and talk about sending Gentle away to a special school for the blind, Livy Two doesn't think her life will ever be quite right again. This is quite simply and beautifully a story about life. It's set in a very specific place and time, but you slide into that space so easily. After reading this for a few hours straight, cars and microwaves were quite a shock! Life isn't always about huge moments, sometimes it's just smaller things, one after another. And you just keep going. It's how you go, and the attitude you have that shows the world who you are. This book is about Louisiana, through Livy Two's eyes, and it speaks volumes for both of them. **Reviewed by: Carrie Spellman

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 9, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2011

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