OVERRIDE

Francie

Karen English

Square Fish

Francie lives with her mother and younger brother, Prez, in rural Alabama, where all three work and wait. Francie's father is trying to get settled in Chicago so he can move his family up North. Unfortunately, he's made promises he hasn't kept, and Francie painfully learns that her dreams of starting junior high school in an integrated urban classroom will go unfulfilled. Amid the day-to-day grind of working odd jobs for wealthy white folks on the other side of town, Francie becomes involved in helping a framed young black man to escape arrest—a brave gesture, but one that puts the entire black community in danger. In this vivid portrait of a girl in the pre-civil rights era South, Karen English completes Francie's world using lively vernacular and a wide array of flesh-and-blood characters. Francie is a Coretta Scott King Honor book.

REVIEWS

Praise for Francie

"Set sometime during the Truman administration [1945-1953], this portrait of a 12-year-old black girl in Alabama is a model of economy. Karen English compresses worlds of feeling and experience into every sequence of her first novel, offering readers not just a good diversion but an opportunity to try on someone else's skin."—The New York Times Book Review
 
"Francie's smooth-flowing, well-paced narration is gently assisted by just the right touch of the vernacular. Characterization is evenhanded and believable, while place and time envelop readers. The message that one must rise out of oppression and actively seek a better life is a good one."—School Library Journal, Starred Review
 
“Readers will cheer Francie and her brave mother, from whom she inherits her rare grace and honesty.”—The Horn Book
 
"A keenly perceptive and gutsy heroine."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
 
"English beautifully captures the charm and peril of Francie's Alabama."—USA Today
"Set sometime during the Truman administration [1945-1953], this portrait of a 12-year-old black girl in Alabama is a model of economy. Karen English compresses worlds of feeling and experience into every sequence of her first novel, offering readers not just a good diversion but an opportunity to try on someone else's skin."—The New York Times Book Review
 
"Francie's smooth-flowing, well-paced narration is gently assisted by just the right touch of the vernacular. Characterization is evenhanded and believable, while place and time envelop readers. The message that one must rise out of oppression and actively seek a better life is a good one."—School Library Journal, Starred Review
 
“Readers will cheer Francie and her brave mother, from whom she inherits her rare grace and honesty.”—The Horn Book
 
"A keenly perceptive and gutsy heroine."—Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
 
"English beautifully captures the charm and peril of Francie's Alabama."—USA Today

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Karen English

  • Karen English is the author of many children's books, including Speak to Me (And I Will Listen Between the Lines), which was an SLJ Best Book of 2004. Her most recent book, The Baby on the Way, illustrated by Sean Qualls, was published in Fall 2005, and her new book, Red Shoes, will be published by FSG in Spring 2009. She lives in Los Angeles, California.
  • Karen English Copyright Yervard / Royal Photography
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Available Formats and Book Details

Francie

Karen English

American Library Association Notable Children's Books, Coretta Scott King Honor, Author, NYPLC Children's Books 100, School Library Journal Best Books of the Year
  • Trade Paperback

  • Hardcover

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  • e-Book

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Square Fish

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