Skip to main content
Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Standing Against the Wind

Standing Against the Wind

Traci L. Jones

Square Fish


In her debut novel, Traci L. Jones presents a girl with grit she never knew she had, and a boy so inspired by her that he begins to take pride in his own abilities.

Patrice dreams of a first-class education, but right now she's just got to survive the walk to school.

Patrice Williams was happy living in Georgia with her grandmother...then her mother lured her to Chicago and ended up in jail. Living in the projects, Patrice is an easy target for everyone. Not only won't she stand up for herself, she cares about her grades—unlike her classmates. But that draws the attention of Monty Freeman, another eighth grader who asks Patrice to tutor his little brother. When Monty becomes her guardian angel, Patrice begins to think something stronger than friendship might be growing between them. Still, nothing will stop her from applying for a scholarship at prestigious Dogwood Academy—except her mother.

Winner of the 2007 Coretta Scott King-John Steptoe New Talent Award | A 2007 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year

New Jersey Garden State Teen Book A ML, Tennessee Intermediate Volunteer State Book Award Master List, Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award - Author, New Jersey Garden State Teen Book Award Master List, King/Steptoe New Talent Award - Author, Nevada YR Award Master List, New York Charlotte Award Master List, TN Intermed Volunt State Book Award ML, Oklahoma Sequoyah Young Adult Book Award Master List, NCSS-CBC NotableTrade-Soc.Stdy, Bank Street Best Children's Book of the Year, NCSS-CBC Notable Trade Book in the Field of Social Studies, Oklahoma Sequoyah YA Book Award ML

From Standing Against the Wind

Most days, Patrice Williams really didn't know which she liked least: walking home or actually getting there.
"Just two more blocks," she whispered to herself as she stood waiting for the light.

Praise for Standing Against the Wind

“The gripping story of a contemporary kid who wants to make her dreams come true.” —Booklist

“Patrice is a true hero, a child who has the inner strength to overcome roadblocks to success. Moving and thought-provoking.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Stories of hope, loyalty, and success such as this one are valuable.” —School Library Journal

“Patrice and Monty emerge as likable kids; readers can plug into their story at multiple levels.” —The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

“This excellent first novel is quite memorable, and readers will be drawn into Patrice's quiet but determined quest for a more promising future. A highly recommended purchase for libraries serving middle and high school students.” —Voice of Youth Advocates


Reviews from Goodreads

Traci L. Jones

TRACI L. JONES's first novel, Standing Against the Wind, was met with critical acclaim, won the Coretta Scott King-John Steptoe New Talent Award, and was named to five state reading lists. Her subsequent novels include Finding My Place and Silhouetted by the Blue. Jones lives with her husband and children in Denver, Colorado.

Square Fish

Latest on Facebook