A companion novel to Finding Langston, recipient of a Coretta Scott King Writing Honor and winner of the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction.
Behind every bad boy is a story worth hearing and at least one chance for redemption. It’s 1946 and Lymon, uprooted from his life in the Deep South and moved up North, needs that chance.
Lymon’s father is, for the time being, at Parchman Farm–the Mississippi State Penitentiary–and his mother, whom he doesn’t remember all that much, has moved North. Fortunately, Lymon is being raised by his loving grandparents. Together, Lymon and his grandpops share a love of music, spending late summer nights playing the guitar.
But Lymon’s world as he knows it is about to dissolve. He will be sent on a journey to two Northern cities far from the country life he loves–and the version of himself he knows. In this companion novel to the Coretta Scott King Honor wining Finding Langston, readers will see a new side of the bully Lymon in this story of an angry boy whose raw talent, resilience, and devotion to music help point him in a new direction.
Lesa Cline-Ransome is the author of Finding Langston, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book and winner of the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction, and Before She Was Harriet, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book, a nominee for an NAACP image award, and winner of the Christopher Award. Her other books include Benny Goodman & Teddy Wilson: Taking the Stage as the First Black-and-White Jazz Band in History and Just a Lucky So and So: The Story of Louis Armstrong.
★ Balancing rich history and timeless themes of race, instability, and the importance of music and the arts, this title is another must-have from Cline-Ransome.-- School Library Journal, Starred Review
★ Cline-Ransome's masterful storytelling will keep readers enthralled . . . A captivating novel about a boy whose story will leave readers wanting more.-- Kirkus Reviews, Starred Review
★ Lymon's life is a study of a boy who perpetually falls through the cracks, and who internalizes the painful lesson that the only person he can count on is himself. Cline-Ransome demonstrates a mastery of character development that deftly weaves historical and sociological nuances of an African American family.-- The Horn Book, Starred Review
Although readers of Finding Langston will appreciate the cannily crafted intersection of the two novels, readers who discover Lymon first will find the experience equally rewarding. --The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
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