Child of the Mountains
By Marilyn Sue Shank
(Delacorte Books for Young Readers, Hardcover, 9780385740791, 272pp.)
Publication Date: April 10, 2012
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"Unfolds in pitch-perfect regional dialect. . . . For fans of Ruth White's and Kerry Madden's Appalachian-inspired fiction."--Kirkus Reviews
It's about keeping the faith.
Growing up poor in 1953 in the Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia doesn't bother Lydia Hawkins. She treasures her tight-knit family. There's her loving mama, now widowed; her whip-smart younger brother, BJ, who has cystic fibrosis; and wise old Gran. But everything falls apart after Gran and BJ die and mama is jailed unjustly. Suddenly Lydia has lost all those dearest to her.
Moving to a coal camp to live with her uncle William and aunt Ethel Mae only makes Lydia feel more alone. She is ridiculed at her new school for her outgrown homemade clothes and the way she talks, and for what the kids believe her mama did. And to make matters worse, she discovers that her uncle has been keeping a family secret—about her.
If only Lydia, with her resilient spirit and determination, could find a way to clear her mother's name. . . .
MARILYN SUE SHANK has a PhD in special education from the University of Kansas. Child of the Mountains is her debut novel.