Red-Dirt Jessieby Anna Myers
Jessie, a girl living in the Oklahoma dust bowl during the Depression, tries to tame a wild dog and help her father recover from a nervous breakdown.
School Library Journal - School Library JournalGr 4-6-- Myers is an author worth keeping an eye on, for behind a decidedly unattractive jacket illustration a very fine first novel. Jessie, 12, is growing up in Oklahoma during the dust-bowl Depression. She is a strong child with wisdom beyond her years. When her young sister dies of pneumonia, she watches her father sink into a severe depression, making him lethargic and unreachable. Jessie comforts her mother and watches after her brother, H. J. When her aunt and uncle leave their farm to seek their fortune in California, she tries to make their nearly wild dog a pet. Ring is shot by a neighboring farmer, and Jessie sees a tie between the wounds the dog and her father suffer. This is a well-written, spare story. The waves of heat in late summer countryside emanate from the pages. Every member of this family comes to life, and the hard work and isolation on the farm are evident. Jessie and her brother's feelings are so real at times that readers will hurt with them. There is also humor in the actions of H. J. and down-to-earth dialogue and action. Coyotes and wild dogs add excitement that leads to a cliff-hanger climax. This is good historical fiction and a sensitive family story. Recommend it to Wilder fans, or for teachers to read aloud. --Susannah Price, Boise Public Library, ID
Meet the Author
Write a Review
and post it to your social network
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
See all customer reviews >