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The Road to Paris

The Road to Paris

4.3 30
by Nikki Grimes

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A Coretta Scott King Honor Book

Paris has just moved in with the Lincoln family, and she isn't thrilled to be in yet another foster home. She has a tough time trusting people, and she misses her brother, who's been sent to a boys' home. Over time, the Lincolns grow on Paris. But no matter how hard she tries to fit in, she can't ignore the feeling that


A Coretta Scott King Honor Book

Paris has just moved in with the Lincoln family, and she isn't thrilled to be in yet another foster home. She has a tough time trusting people, and she misses her brother, who's been sent to a boys' home. Over time, the Lincolns grow on Paris. But no matter how hard she tries to fit in, she can't ignore the feeling that she never will, especially in a town that's mostly white while she is half black. It isn't long before Paris has a big decision to make about where she truly belongs.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Norah Piehl
Grimes, winner of the Coretta Scott King Award for Bronx Masquerade, offers a rare success story about foster care in this elegantly simple (but never simplistic) story. Eight-year-old Paris Richmond, on the road to yet another foster home, feels like she never really belongs anywhere: "‘Sometimes I wish I was like my name . . . somewhere far away, out of reach. Somewhere safe down south or on the other side of the ocean.' Instead, she is neither Paris nor Richmond. She felt like a nobody caught in the dark spaces in between. A nobody on her way to nowhere." Rejected by her mother, separated from her protective older brother, ostracized from both black and white communities by virtue of being biracial, Paris has a hard time trusting anyone. Convinced her newest foster placement with the Lincoln family will be a disaster like all the others, Paris only gradually realizes the extent of the family's kindness and learns to trust her foster brother's advice to "keep God in [her] pocket." In well-crafted prose, Grimes dramatizes both the best and worst of foster care situations, offering both a compelling character study and a discussion-provoking final scene.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-7-For eight-year-old Paris Richmond, home "was such a funny word." Because she and her older brother had moved from one foster home to another so often, it had come to mean not a place but a person. Malcolm was the one constant in her life. When they run away from an abusive home, they seek refuge with their grandmother, who returns them to the foster-care system. It is then that the siblings are placed in separate homes. Though Paris desperately misses Malcolm during her year with the Lincoln family, she gradually comes to trust them and even her own instincts. She gains coping skills through a newfound religious faith and the talent to share it through music. Her ability to keep "God in her pocket" allows her to overcome fears and difficulty. Her convictions allow her to endure inexcusable prejudice and malice as well as recognize the beauty and kindness around her. A poignant and plausible story, Paris is well crafted and simply but elegantly told. Even secondary characters are well drawn and recognizable as they grow, mature, and propel readers to a satisfying, hopeful, though not pat conclusion. Readers will pull for a successful life for Paris and Malcolm as they reunite with their mother and her new husband. They are also confident that Paris now knows what and where home really is.-Maria B. Salvadore, formerly at Washington DC Public Library Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Eight-year-old Paris Richmond has never had it easy. Her white father walked out on the family; her black mother tends to drink when she's lonely. Only Paris's older brother Malcolm is a constant, even when they are sent to live with an awful foster mother. When the children run away, Family Services separates them and Paris must face a strange new foster family and a new school on her own. The Lincolns turn out to be a good foster family, and Paris spends a year learning to trust others, God and herself. She finds not being entirely forthcoming can be as painful as being false, and she finds in her new strength forgiveness for her birth mother. Grimes has created a real little girl whose growth is perfectly paced and believable. The characters around her are not all perfectly realized, but Paris's story is touching and worth a place in most collections. Given the dearth of success stories featuring foster children and bi-racial characters, this is all the more important. (Fiction. 8-12)
From the Publisher
"In clear short chapters, Grimes tells a beautiful story of family, friendship, and faith from the viewpoint of a child in search of home in a harsh world. [I]t is the human story behind the case file that readers will remember." —Booklist, starred review

Product Details

Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Sales rank:
700L (what's this?)
File size:
731 KB
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"In clear short chapters, Grimes tells a beautiful story of family, friendship, and faith from the viewpoint of a child in search of home in a harsh world. [I]t is the human story behind the case file that readers will remember." —Booklist, starred review

Meet the Author

Nikki Grimes is the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of dozens of children’s and young adult books as well as a poet and journalist.
Among the many accolades she has received are the Golden Dolphin Award (2005),the NCTE Award for Excellence in Poetry for Children (2006), the Coretta Scott King Award (2003) for Bronx Masquerade, and the Horace Mann Upstanders Award (2011) for Almost Zero: A Dyamonde Daniel Book. Additionally, her book Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope (illustrated by Bryan Collier) was a New York Times bestseller, and she was acknowledged as an NAACP Image Award Finalist in 1993 for her book Malcolm X: a Force for Change. Her books Meet Danitra Brown (illustrated by Floyd Cooper), Jazmin's NotebookTalkin' About Bessie (illustrated by E.B. Lewis), Dark Sons, The Road to Paris, and Words with Wings were each awarded Coretta Scott King Honors. Visit her online at www.nikkigrimes.com.

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Road to Paris 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 30 reviews.
toadette More than 1 year ago
This book is about a girl named Paris who lives with her brother Malcolm until she is taken to live with a foster family. The family treats her like she was their own daughter. I thought this book was really good. The writing and events made me want to keep on reading it. I finished this story very quickly and I think that you will enjoy it also. This book also won the Coretta Scott King award.
LIV2read More than 1 year ago
My family loves books by Nikki Grimes, but I was surprised when my granddaughter wanted this. It sounded a little heavy, a bit depressing. The story, about a young girl (mostly) and her life experiences in the foster care system, is a anything but depressing. It restores your faith in people and is a believable and thought provoking read without being too heavy. I loved her foster family, especially the little boy. I highly recommend for the whole family.
S.Quertermous More than 1 year ago
This is a touching story of a young girl (Paris) who is allowed to make her own life descision for better or worse. I feel this book is an easy and quick read. I would definitely encourage reading this book if you enjoy stories with a unique ending. My only complaint is that this book may give some children who can relate to Paris false hopes about their own future. "The Road to Paris" is a wonderful story mostly geared toward females, and would work great in the upper elementary setting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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mds81 More than 1 year ago
The road to Paris follows Paris, an orphan girl who has been going from foster home to foster home. Unexpectadly her and her brother are seperated. She moves in with the Lincolns where learns many life leasons. In the end she end up having to decide whether or not to move in with her biological mother.
Over all this is a good book for kids to learn about the challenges that life can bring our way. It is a good way for them to learn about diversity and over comming adversity. Adults and kids will enjoy this book.
Stephanie11 More than 1 year ago
It was about a girl named Paris who was right years old. Paris and her brother Malcolm were both living with their foster parents. Paris would get beaten by her foster mother. Malcolm and Paris¿s mother was an alcoholic and she didn¿t want anything to do with them. They were both fed up with their foster parents so they ran away to their grandmother¿s house. Paris finds a new family to live with and becomes a new person. Everything is good, but then Paris has to decide if she wants to live with her real mother or the Lincolns. This is a really good book for 3rd-5th graders because it shows the different lifestyles that Paris and Malcolm had to go through. You can interpret lesson plans about challenges and accomplishments that Paris went through. Paris went through a bumpy road, but she became stronger. ¿Paris had learned to keep God in her pocket, and as long as she kept him close, she knew she¿d be all right.¿ (Grimes 153).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Eight year old Paris grew up with her brother Malcolm with their mother. Paris's white father left when she was young because he was ashamed of her color and Malcolm's father left when he was a baby. Both Paris and Malcolm were taken away from their mother when she became an alcoholic due to a bread up with a boyfriend. Paris and Malcolm were split up to different homes which was a difficult transition for Paris. However, Paris found her self in a happy home filled with love. The only problem is that her mother wants her back and Paris struggles to find what home really is. This book is a great book for young readers and is a great multicultural book for literature.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As as young foster care girl, Paris has no sense of what calls a home. At least it's not a thing, it's a person, her brother Malcolm. But she is forced to live part of her life without him and travel from home to home. She lives the life of a stray until she meets the Lincoln's and slowly warms up to them. They are very welcoming people who have three other children they take care of, who help her through life's journey. Paris does not depend on adults because she has practically raised herself and become independent. But once her mother calls and wants her to come back and become a family again, Paris must make the choice, in which she isn't quite sure on what to do.

I absolutely loved this book and found myself lost in the life of Paris. Nikki Grimes captures so many personal moments that Paris struggles through and especially the role of having no real family or home. This book would work great in the classroom to show diversity among people and the hardships we often have to over come. For an 8-13 year old reader, this works prefect for them because I felt it was an easy read and follow, as well as understand.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book by Nikki Grimes tells the story of a young foster child, Paris, who has been neglected by her alcoholic mother. After her brother and her are put in the foster system they are sent from home to home. Throughout her journey Paris has to deal with being seperated from her brother, Malcolm while adjusting to her new foster family. This new foster family is nothing like the ones of her past and she finds it hard to trust anyone. Then life takes a surprise turn for Paris and she is faced with the toughest decision of her life. Her mother wants to try being a family again, Paris is faced with the task of deciding what exactly it is that she wants to do with her life.

This book does a great job of putting the reader in Paris' shoes. With the book being told from her viewpoint it feels as if you are actually a part of what is going on in her life. It makes it really easy to relate to her emotions. Even though a large majority of children haven't experienced anything like this in their lifetime this book makes it possible for them to understand that situations like these do exist.

This book would be of great use in the classroom. Student's can learn a lot of life lessons from this and I feel it would really catch their attention. However there is a religous aspect to it which isn't always appropriate for the classroom. Therefore that is something you must take into consideration.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
AMK-TE301 More than 1 year ago
The Road to Paris is a story about a young girl named Paris Richmond who is 8 years old. Paris and her brother, Malcolm, have been put in the foster care system because of her neglectful, alcoholic mother. After running away to their grandmother's home, Malcolm and Paris are separated and sent to different foster homes. Paris moves in with the Linclon family and unlike the other foster houses, they are caring and love that she is there. Paris has become more independent, but still misses her brother who has always been her support system. Everything is going great, then she gets a call from her mother; Paris is faced with a difficult decison. This book is a wonderful read and would be appropriate for school students in grades 3rd-6th.
Carrie-TE-301 More than 1 year ago
The Road To Paris by Nikki Grimes, tells the story of a young girl named Paris and her older brother Malcolm as they endure the struggles that come along with being placed into different foster homes when their mother can no longer take care of them. Paris must deal with the emotional turmoil of having her brother taken away from her, and also the adjustment of moving in with a new foster family who is nothing like those of her past. Being biracial brings about it's own set of problems for Paris, as she struggles to fit in at her new school along with finding out who she really is. The Lincolns have made her a part of their family, but deep down inside she still has a deep love for her birth mother, and she must face some tough decisions about what she really wants in life.

This book does an excellent job of allowing the reader to experience firsthand what life is like for the main character Paris. Through her emotional story, told through the perspective of Paris, the reader is given the opportunity to experience firsthand what life was like for Paris, and the things she had to endure to find out who she really was and what was best for her in life. The reader is also allowed the chance to experience the pain and sorrow felt by Paris when she was seperated from her brother, along with the happiness and acceptance she felt when she was taken by the Lincolns. The book makes the reader eager to find out if there will be a happy ending to the story.

I highly recommend this book for use within the classroom setting, especially for helping to teach about prejudices within our society about people who may be different than us, and also what the true meaning of family is, along with finding your true identity and happiness in life. The book is easy to read and follow, geared towards the late elementary , early middle school age. The books deals with many topics so teachers should be ready to have open time for discussion and reflection, and know that the story will be a great read for their students.
KK2005 More than 1 year ago
The Road to Paris is explains Paris's journey from being in foster care with her biological brother, Malcolm, to her stay with the Lincoln's to her return to her real mother and Malcolm. Paris struggles with trusting the Lincoln's and is reluctant to giving everything a chance. After she realizes maybe this family is different, she begins to adjust. She gets along well with her brothers and sister even though they aren't her real brothers and sister. She realizes that she loves singing in the church choir and it is her escape. She gets along well with the family and feels loved because the Lincolns treat her as one of their own. She has chores like the other children, and she gets a new dress for Easter. Paris's real mom calls her from time to time to spend a weekend with her and takes her to see Malcolm. She misses her brother dearly. After spending a year with the Lincoln's, she gets a call from her mother asking her to come home. She has gotten remarried and wants Paris and Malcolm to come home. She is not sure what she wants to do because she doesn't know what his stepfather is like and is happy with her new family. In the end she ends up giving her real mom another chance.

I enjoyed the book a lot. I think it had good description, and I liked how it was from Paris's point of view. It gave great description on how she was feeling and what she was thinking especially when people were talking to her. The author would say what the characters were saying and then Paris would comment on it. It really gave a view inside her character.

It is a good example of how teachers could show students that there are broken families. It would be good to use if there are students that have divorced parents, adopted, or in foster care. It would show them that it doesn't matter if they aren't with their real parents all the time; they just need to be happy and feel loved. I would use this book in my classroom and would recommend it to my students. It has a good lesson behind the idea of family.
Ellen-TE301 More than 1 year ago
The Road to Paris is a touching story of a young girl who wants so badly to find a family she can trust and be a part of. Paris and her brother Malcolm are taken from their biological mother and placed in foster homes, but as they become unbearable, the children run away. Malcolm is then placed in a youth home and Paris is taken to live with the Lincoln family. Paris has a hard time fitting in with the family and trusting them, but as she spends more time with the family, she begins to love them and feels a sense of belonging. Just as Paris is feeling at home with the Lincoln family, she receives a call from her mother, who wants to try being a family again. Paris must then decide which family she wants to be a part of. The book tells the story of Paris' struggle to fit in and belong to a family she loves. The book is both touching and relatable. When reading this book, the reader will feel sympathy for Paris and will want nothing more than for her to find a loving family. The book reflects the important themes of family and tolerance for other cultures. I recommend this book because of its touching story, believable characters and the life lessons that can be found in its text. The book was a portrayal of a young girls struggle to find acceptance, love and family, which are all things that everyone wants.
Miss_Beth More than 1 year ago
This is a touching story about a young girl named Paris. She and her brother Malcolm were placed in foster care due to an alcoholic mother who was lonely and gone from home a lot. The foster system kept them together as long as possible, but certain circumstances tore the siblings apart and they were placed in seperate homes. This story teaches children about diversity and I would use it to show children that all kinds of things can happen in life. Whether the circumstances are good or bad, keep faith and it can all work out.
Matt-TE301 More than 1 year ago
Author Nikki Grimes writes a very compeling story entitled The Road to Paris. The main character Paris Richmond is an 8 year old girl who has no father and an alcholic mother. Because of that her brother and herself are in foster care. Unfortunetly all the foster homes her and Malocolm, her brother are in always live in homes where they get treated horribly. After running away from another home the two are get seperated and unlike Malcolm, Paris is put into a home with the Lincolns. She thinks the worst will happen to her but then comes to realize that they are really nice, loving people. After getting close to the Lincolns, her mother comes back into her life asking her to come back to live with her. Of course Paris has a hard decision to make because she would like to go back to live with her mom but then she really likes living with the Lincolns because she knows how they will treat her. This story does a great job showing the struggles Paris goes through in making a decision. I would highly recommend this book to anyone in the grades 5th-7th because it can easily relate to anyone who is going through the same problem.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Paris is a young girl who is in the foster care system because her mother has a drinking problem and cannot take care of Paris and her brother, Malcolm. After a slew of being bounced from one bad foster home to the next, Paris and Malcom run away together to their Grandma's, only to be turned away. They are then separated and Paris is sent to live with the Lincoln family. There, she learns how to trust and finds love again from this wonderful family. The triumphs and misfortunes of Paris in her young life force her to grow up and make difficult decisions long before a young child should have to.
TE301-Meredith More than 1 year ago
In The Road to Paris, the author, Nikki Grimes takes Paris Richmond on an emotional adventure. Paris is an 8 year old girl who feels as if she has never had a home. Her father left the family and her mother is an alcoholic causing Paris to be placed in and out of abusive foster homes. The only reliable person that Paris has is her older brother Malcolm, but she even loses Malcolm along the way. The siblings try to run away from an abusive foster home, but instead of getting away, they are caught and are thrown into separate foster homes. Paris is all alone in a new community and she expects her new foster home to be like all of the other foster homes that she has been to, but she is wrong. The Lincolns are a carring family who shows Paris how to not only trust others, but to trust God. When Paris finally finds a loving family, Paris¿s mother comes back into her life. After forgiving her mother, Paris has to make a difficult decision on whether she wants to stay with her generous foster family or return to her birth mother. Grimes cleverly shows the struggles of an unstable family, which is very common in our culture today. This book can relate to many students, and show them that they are not alone. Grimes presents important issues and sends an inspiring message to children. I would highly recommend this book to children, especially in classrooms ranging from grade 5 to grade 7. Let Paris¿s story inspire you!
Emily24TE More than 1 year ago
Road to Paris is about a young girl (Paris) and her brother Malcolm, who escape an abusive foster home and ultimately get separated from one another. Paris, who ends up in a loving household, often dreams of her brother and writes letters to him that she has nowhere to send. After some time, Paris' birth mother Viola returns to the scene, trying to repair her relationship with Paris. Paris, who is hesitant to trust others but is guided by her faith in God, reestablishes a bond with her mother, but is then faced with a difficult task when her birth mother asks that Paris return to home, since Viola has repaired her life. This is an intensely personal and motivating book that has the power to present important issues to children. Written by a woman who was in and out of foster care, it has the potential to touch the lives of youngsters facing similar issues.
dana87 More than 1 year ago
The Road to Paris is a book about a young girl named Paris. She struggles with a bad life at home and is bounced from foster home to foster home. Finally, she lands in a home that seems to be just right, but does she really belong there? Then, there's the question of her mother, who is just that, a big question mark. Should she be in Paris' life? Does Paris even want her in her life? It can be hard to tell at points. This is a good coming of age book that, I believe, kids will be able to relate to. I would recommend this book, especially to teachers.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story is about a young girl named Paris who learns to forgive through the love and trust shown to her by her foster parents.
Paris and her brother are placed in the foster care system because of their irresponsible mother (and a missing father figure). After unanswered pleas for help for the abuse they receive in their foster home, Paris and Malcolm run away to their Grandmother. She provides no safe haven for the children and they are then split up and forced to live in separate homes. Paris learns an important lesson about judging individuals and finds a home where she belongs.
This book is a great read for young and old!
Guest More than 1 year ago
In this fun loving adventure, paris is getting beatin by the boones and malcom trys to stop them but when they both get takin apart,paris goes to the lincolns, were she thinks there just going to beat her but she was wrong. Alo, Paris thinks that there will never be a place called home. But read it and find out!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Nikki Grimes does an excellant job portraying the harsh life of Paris an eight year old child forced into the foster care system, because of her neglectful mother and absent father. Paris is a biracial little girl who adores her half brother Malcolm, and depends on him for stablity in a abusive system. After the two siblings runaway from an abusive foster home to an unsympathic grandmother they are separted and Paris must face an uncertain world without the only calming force she knew. The Lincolns opened their home and showed Paris how to trust and love. With their help she was able to heal. The book is easier for young readers to understand and fast pace, so that they don't lose interest. I recommend this book for familes as well as to be used in schools. The message is hopefully and uplifting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hi Nikki,
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love book because its interestin to me i really live it no lie though