Brown Girl Dreaming
After Tupac and D Foster – 2009 Newberry Honor Medal
Feathers – 2008 Newberry Honor Medal
Show Way – 2006 Newberry Honor Medal
Hush – 2002 National Book Award Finalist
Beneath a Meth Moon
Raised in South Carolina and New York, Woodson always felt halfway home in each place. In vivid poems, she shares what it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and her growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child’s soul as she searches for her place in the world.
The day D Foster enters Neeka and her best friend’s lives, the world opens up for them. Suddenly they’re keenly aware of things beyond their block in Queens, things that are happening in the world—like the shooting of Tupac Shakur—and in search of their Big Purpose in life. When—all too soon—D’s mom swoops in to reclaim her, and Tupac dies, they are left with a sense of how quickly things can change and how even all-too-brief connections can touch deeply.
The Emily Dickinson poem Frannie is reading in school begins with “Hope is the thing with feathers/That perches in the soul…” Frannie hasn’t thought much about hope. There are so many other things to think about. During a winter full of surprises, good and bad, Frannie starts seeing a lot of things in a new light—her brother Sean’s deafness, her mother’s fear, the class bully’s anger, her best friend Samantha’s faith and her own desire for “the thing with feathers.”
Soonie's great-grandma was just seven years old when she was sold to a big plantation without her ma and pa, and with only some fabric and needles to call her own. She pieced together bright patches with names like North Star and Crossroads, patches with secret meanings made into quilts called Show Ways -- maps for slaves to follow to freedom. Generations later, Soonie -- who was born free -- taught her own daughter how to sew beautiful quilts to be sold at market and how to read. From slavery to freedom, through segregation, freedom marches and the fight for literacy, the tradition called Show Way has been passed down by the women in Jacqueline Woodson's family as a way to remember the past and celebrate the possibilities of the future.
Evie Thomas is not who she used to be. Once she had a best friend, a happy home and a loving grandmother living nearby. Once her name was Toswiah. Now, everything is different. Her family has been forced to move to a new place and change their identities. But that's not all that has changed. Her once lively father has become depressed and quiet. Her mother leaves teaching behind and clings to a new-found religion. Her only sister is making secret plans to leave. And Evie, struggling to find her way in a new city where kids aren't friendly and the terrain is as unfamiliar as her name, wonders who she is.
In Beneath a Meth Moon, Laurel would do anything to turn back time ― to tell her mother and grandmother not to stay home near the beach with a hurricane coming to say no when her boyfriend, T-Boom, the co-captain of the basketball team, offers her that first hit of moon ― the drug that makes her feel bigger than all she’s lost to have been there for her little brother and her best friend, Kaylee, when they needed her, instead of chasing the moon But she can’t. All she can do is move forward now. And only she can decide whether to face the pain and joy that is a part of living, or follow the moon to numbness and probably death.