One Crazy Summer

One Crazy Summer[PDF / Epub] ☁ One Crazy Summer By Rita Williams-Garcia – Tbjewellers.co.uk In the summer of 1968 after travelling from Brooklyn to Oakland California to spend a month with the mother they barely know eleven year old Delphine and her two younger sisters arrive to a cold welco In the summer of after travelling from Brooklyn to Oakland California to spend a month with the mother they barely know eleven year old Delphine and her two younger sisters arrive to a cold welcome as they discover that their mother a dedicated poet and printer is resentful of the intrusion of their visit and wants them to attend a nearby Black Panther summer campIn a humorous and breakout book by Williams Garcia the Penderwicks meet the Black Panthers.

I was born in ueens NY on April My mother Miss Essie named me 'NoMo' immediately after my birth Although I was her last child I took my time making my appearance I like to believe I was dreaming up a good story and wouldn’t budge until I was finished Even now my daughters call me 'Pokey Mom' because I slow poke around when they want to go go go I learned to read early and.

One Crazy Summer ePUB ¹ One Crazy  ePUB ½
  • Hardcover
  • 224 pages
  • One Crazy Summer
  • Rita Williams-Garcia
  • English
  • 07 October 2016
  • 9780060760885

10 thoughts on “One Crazy Summer

  1. says:

    I do not ordinarily read middle grade books unless I am sharing them with my grandson but I was drawn to this beautiful book initially because of its subject matter children in Oakland during the early days of the Black Panther Party But this book is so much than its historical setting I fell head over heels in love with the narrator of this book Delphine and her younger sisters Vonetta and Fern With a group here on Goodreads I recently reread the wonderful short story collection Gorilla My Love by Toni Cade Bambara We all loved Bambara's strong resilient African American girls and Delphine is certainly a full fledged member of that sisterhood Smart brave and responsible far beyond her age of 11 going on 12 Delphine has looked after her younger sisters along with her father and Big Ma since her mother abandoned the family seven years earlier When Pa decides that the girls need to get to know their mother they travel to Oakland where they encounter a very different mother than the one they pictured Their experiences in Oakland with their mother CecileNzila are perfectly related through through Delphine's eyes Part of Williams Garcia's brilliance is that she keeps Delphine's point of view but through Delphine we come to know her sisters the political climate of the time and the other characters in the book including CecileNzila Although no one would argue that CecileNzila is anything but a truly terrible mother Williams Garcia through Delphine gives us a glimpse of the reasons behind her actions and we are able to feel compassion for her no small achievementThere is no neat happy conclusion to this story and it would not be believable if there were But there is growth on everybody's part and there is greater understanding And above all there are Delphine Vonetta and Fern beautiful wonderful girls that I will never forget Yes this is a middle grade novel but it is so richly layered and beautifully written that I suspect that many readers of all ages will treasure this book Many thanks to Rita Williams Garcia for Delphine Vonetta and Fern and this dazzlingly beautiful book

  2. says:

    When I heard that teen author Rita Williams Garcia had written a middle grade novel for kids I wasn't moved one way or another I don't read teen books Couldn't say I knew much of the woman's work When I heard that her book was about the Black Panthers however my interest was piued Black Panthers eh? The one political group so difficult to write about that you can't find them in a single children's book aside from The Rock and the River by Kekla Magoon of course So what was her take? How was she going to do it? But the thing is One Crazy Summer is than merely a historical tale It's a story about family and friendships and self sacrifice There are so many ideas floating about this little novel that you'd think it would end up some kind of unholy mess Instead it's funny and painful and just a little bit brilliant One Crazy Summer is a book that's going to earn itself a lot of fans And a lot of them are going to be kidsEleven going on twelve Delphine has always kept a sharp eye on her little nine and seven year old sisters Vonetta and Fern That's because their mother left them seven years ago and never came back again Cecile Johnson mammal birth giver alive an abandoner is our mother A statement of fact So when their father packs them on a plane and sends them to Oakland California to see Cecile their mom the girls have no idea what to expect Certainly they didn't think she'd just leave them in a kind of daycare over the summer run by members of the Black Panthers And they probably didn't expect that their mother would want near to nothing to do with them save the occasional meal and admonishment to keep out of her kitchen Only Delphine knew what might happen and she makes it her mission to not only take care of her siblings no matter how crazy they make her but also to negotiate the tricky waters that surround the woman who gave her up so long agoThe whole reason this novel works is because author Rita Williams Garcia has a fantastic story that also happens to meld seamlessly into the summer of 1968 I've been complaining for years that when it comes to the Black Panthers there wasn't so much as a page of literature out there for kids on the topic except the aforementioned The Rock and the River and even that's almost teen fare Now One Crazy Summer is here Certainly I don't know how Ms Williams Garcia set about writing the darn thing but if she had stridently set about to teach without taking into consideration the essentials of good storytelling this book would have sank like a stone Instead she infuses this tale with danger characters you want to take a turn about the block with and the heat of an Oakland sunI mean take the people in this book Someone once sold this story to me as The Penderwicks meets the Black Panthers and for the longest time I couldn't figure out why they`d said it Then I started thinking back to the sisters Ms Wiliams Garcia must have sisters She must How else to explain the dynamic between Delphine Vonetta and Fern? So it all became clear If you love the family dynamics of The Penderwicks you'll probably find yourself loving the same thing here Of course when your heroine is an upright citizen like Delphine there is a danger of making her too goody goody to like But this girl isn't like that She has a duty that she believes in taking care of her sisters and she'll do it even when they fight each other Even when they team up against HER The sheer unfairness of what Delphine has to handle and the cheery lack of complaining aside from the occasional and very understandable grumble makes you care for her Her interactions with her mother are what make you love herBecause this mother is a pip Cecile throws a wrench and a couple of other metal objects besides I'd wager into the good guybad guy way of looking at things For kids she's a pretty clear cut villain from page one onward And adults who have enough historical understand to be clear on why she does some of the things she does still won't like her I wouldn't even be surprised if some parents referred to her as the world's worst mother She isn't really but many a parent's ire will be raised when they see how she refuses to call her daughter Fern by her name out of spite or refuses to so much as look her own daughters for a while Heck this may be the only book where the phrase Should have gone to Mexico to get rid of you when I had the chance comes from the lips of a parental unit not that any kid in the world would decipher what it means Under normal circumstances when you get a kid talking about the selfishness of their parent at the beginning of a book they turn out to be wrong in the end So naturally I was waiting on tenterhooks for much of this book to see if Cecile would be perfectly redeemed by the story's end Williams Garcia never wraps anything up with a cute little bow but she gives you closure with Cecile and maybe a drop of understanding It's a far better solutionWilliams Garcia will even use character development to place the story within the context of its time The opinionated Big Ma who raised the three girls gives her thoughts on any matter rain or shine Delphine then lists them and kids are treated to a uickie encapsulation of life in '68 Pretty sneaky Teaches `em when they're not looking And one of those very topics is the Black Panther party I was very pleased with how Williams Garcia sought to define that group She dispels misconceptions and rumors Delphine herself often has to come to grips with her initial perceptions and the actual truths As for the rest of the time period itself little details spotted throughout the book make 1968 feel real For example the girls play a game where they count the number of black characters on television shows and commercials Or the one time Delphine had felt truly scared when a police officer in Alabama pulled her father overAnd I'm sorry You can make amazing believable characters all day if you want to but there's to writing than just that This writer doesn't just conjure up people She has a way with a turn of a phrase Three Black Panthers talking with Cecile are Telling it like it is like talking was their weapon Later Cecile tells her eldest daughter It wouldn't kill you to be selfish Delphine This book is a pleasure to cast your eyes overThere is a moment near the end of the book when Fern recites a poem that is just so good that I couldn't seriously believe that a seven year old would be able to pull it off So I mentioned this fact to a teacher and a librarian and found myself swiftly corrected Oh no said the librarian Seven is when kids are at their most shockingly creative It's only later that they start worrying about whether or not it's any good So I'm willing to believe that Fern's poem could have happened Otherwise I certainly would have appreciated an Author's Note at the end with information about the Black Panthers for kids who wanted to learn And I was also left wondering where Delphine got her name She spends a bit of time agonizing over that uestion why her mother named her that and never really finds out Some kind of explanation there would have been niceIt was teacher Monica Edinger who pointed out that One Crazy Summer pairs strangely well with Cosmic if you look at them in terms of fathers on the Cosmic side and mothers One Crazy Summer's focus That's one theme for the book but you could pluck out so many if you wanted to Race and family and forgiveness and growth Everyone grows in this book Everyone learns But you'll have so much fun reading it you might not even notice You might just find yourself happily ensconced in the world of Delphine Vonetta and Fern without ever wishing to leave it If this is how Ms Williams Garcia writes books for kids then she better stop writing all that teen fare and crank a couple like this one Kids are gonna dig itAges 9 12

  3. says:

    Well that gave me a whole lotta feels

  4. says:

    Important topic? YesWriting? FabulousCharacters? EngagingNewbery material? Well I suppose since adults are the ones to vote then yes Probably But if kids were voting I'm not sure this book would make the Newbery radar I started reading it to my kids and ended up finishing it myself Normally when kids have an awful self centered mother or parent figure in children's literature there is a candy house or 7 little men to make up for it Not so in this book Cecile never seemed to come around to her own flesh and blood I kept thinking there'd be a point where she would wake up and develop a shred of human decency but she didn't And maybe it has something to do with the fact that I was an oldest child who was given responsibility for my younger siblings I didn't always want but poor 11 year Delphine being forced to take over the roll of mother to her two little sisters really boiled my blood Not fair Her responsible nature was exploited at the expense of her childhood I realize I'm missing the point the story was trying to make; about the unfair struggles that went on in the black community in Oakland in the 70's Maybe the idea was for the reader to draw the parallel between the unfairness of Delphine having the world's suckiest mom and the unfairness of the African American person's daily struggle to be treated civilly and with human decency Both situations were maddening and made no senseHow could Pa and Big Ma send their three little girls across the country to spend an unsupervised summer with a woman they knew full well had not one ounce of motherly love? The story definitely had it's moments of triumph like when Delphine was finally allowed in the kitchen to cook a regular meal for her sisters the day trip into San Francisco or when Fern ratted out Crazy Kelvin with her poem I was just so overwhelmed with dislike for Cecile and anger at Delphine's lot to enjoy this story as I should have Could it be that that was the point?At any rate I don't think Cecile deserved that hug at the end Surely not

  5. says:

    We didn't come here for the revolution In turbulent 1968 three little girls fly to Oakland to reunite with the mother who abandoned them years before Instead of being greeted at the airport with tears and hugs they are met by an indifferent woman who sees their presence not as a chance to get reacuainted but as an interruption to her life I didn't send for you Didn't want you in the first place Should have gone to Mexico to get rid of you when I had the chance She orders them to stay out of her kitchen and banishes them from the house during the daytime so that she can continue with her mysterious work At her suggestion they spend much of the day at a local community center which turns out to be the Black Panther's summer camp What would Papa have said if he knew I was bringing Vonetta and Fern to a summer school where police cars drove by to see what we were doing? While their education in the current political climate is underway they also learn how to make new friends and get along with others Then just when Delphine the oldest girl thinks she's got everything under control the camp organizers announce that everyone will be taking part in an upcoming rally I knew rally meant protest and that protest could mean riot This is another instance of me falling for a cute cover I mean look at those adorable little girls But sometimes a cute cover also has some pretty terrific pages inside Williams Garcia's story is told with warmth and humor I loved these kids particularly the serious and bookish Delphine I was thrilled to learn that this is part of a trilogy I'm very much looking forward to spending time with the Gaither sisters

  6. says:

    It’s 1968 and 11 year old Delphine Gaither has her hands full playing mother to her two little sisters 9 year old Vonetta and 7 year old Fern She lives in Brooklyn with her father and his prim old fashioned mother called Big Ma Where’s the girls’ mother? Cecile Johnson abandoned the family before Delphine turned 5 Now Pa thinks the three Gaither girls should spend a month this summer with their long lost mother in Oakland California And it will be one crazy summerYou see Cecile now going by the revolutionary name of Nzila is much devoted to her poetry and the Black Panther led revolution than she is to her own family in which she literally has no interest She shuffles the girls used to a pretty staid existence in Brooklyn off to a Black Panther summer camp to keep them out of her way Serious self sacrificing Delphine already too grown up for her age finds herself having to take care of her sisters pretty much on her own Although already resentful of the mother who preferred a life without children to hamper her art and her freedom Delphine never expected the cold reception she and her sisters received One Crazy Summer is one part the tale of a family torn apart but it’s also a glimpse into the early days of the Black Panther movement and a reminder of what life was life for African Americans no so very long ago In addition the novel serves as a glimpse into the mind of a perceptive moral and very intelligent young girl who is wise beyond her years — and who knows it’s because she has to beAnd as for Cecile? I have to agree with Delphine’s sentiment on the first day of meeting her mother in Oakland “I didn’t want to say Big Ma was right Cecile was no kind of mother Cecile didn’t want us Cecile was crazy I didn’t have to”view spoilerThe poet formerly known as Cecile Johnson seethes with revolutionary fervor admittedly essential for social change; I get that But no mother should tell her children to their faces that she should have aborted them — even if she harbors that feeling in her heart And no one — man nor woman — should feel that the only way to assist the revolution is by criminally neglecting his or her children Ruth First and Joe Slovo managed to lead the ANC struggle in South Africa without abandoning their children like unwanted kittens I think Nzila nee Cecile could have followed the example of Ruth First who was feeling the same pulls between family and justice during the same yearsDid her only terrible abusive upbringing justify a selfishness that led her to abandon three children — one still on the breast — because she couldn’t get her own way? Cecile may think so but I can’t agree even if she succeeds at least partially in gaining Delphine’s sympathy hide spoiler

  7. says:

    Wow what a trip as we used to say back in ’68 Did this ever bring me back to the summer of 1968 I was not an African American eleven year old girl visiting Oakland but I was a fourteen year old white Jewish girl across the bay living in San Francisco There was a chapter that takes place in San FranciscoSo the author got one thing wrong about Oakland no there are no hills at all in that part of town and maybe one thing about San Francisco wrong I don’t think there were palm trees in that location but I could have just forgotten I suppose Otherwise much of the locale and time period seemed authenticThis story definitely fits on my orphaned and uasi orphaned kids shelfI really liked Delphine the narrator at 11 going on 12 and the oldest of 3 sisters who live in Brooklyn New York with their father and paternal grandmother and who go to visit their birth mother in Oakland a woman who abandoned them when they were very youngI thought most of the story rang true It was a bit on the edge of seeming realistic at times yet so was my life at a certain point in time so I bought it The ending seemed not uite right but I can think of many other endings that would have worked even less well I am glad that Delphine got some answers very glad and knowing what Delphine learns does give credence and depth to what happened with this family and why Cecile did what she did and why she was the person she became I love the sisters’ relationships with one another especially how the oldest is most irritated by her middle sister but feels as though she knows her well compared to how she loves her little sister even though she’s a bit of a mystery to her and then how the two youngest fight with one another ; it all seemed very genuine The narrator really got across what it felt like to be a minority She “counts” other African American then going by black or colored people in various locations; I’ve been a “minority” only a few times including two school experiences but during those I definitely noted who else was “like me” and was highly aware of my minority statusThis is a fine book for kids who enjoy historical fiction novels with a bit of adventure and novels with a believable child narrator The story is sad in many ways but it isn’t depressingI read this now because I think the Children's Books group is going to read this book as one of their January selections It’s got uite a long hold list at the library so I read it as soon as I was able to get a copyEdited to add Oh and this book is very funny

  8. says:

    I have mixed feelings about this book It does several things successfully Sister relationships kids who have to take on extra responsibility at a young age homeless teens and political action in America in the 1960s And all within a palatable mid elementary storyline I worry though that kids far removed from that time and place will somehow get the picture that the black panthers condoned abandoning your children The panther characters in this book seem angry dogmatic and tone deaf to the needs of the actual people in front of them other than food The reasons for their political movement and the history behind them are only briefly touched upon The ending also implies that everything is now okay Delphine's mother may have told the story of her hard life; it explains but does not erase the hardness she has shown her girls While reading I kept making connections to the memoir by Alice Walker's daughter who wrote about living between two worlds coasts and parents I also have to admit that I can't help reading stories like this through my own experience of airline shuttling with siblings to parents whose attention was elsewhere riding buses to pools and stores and other parts of the city alone at 8 and 11 It sounds free and adventurous and full of potential glamour but for kids under certain age it just feels unmoored

  9. says:

    This is one of those one chapter and then I'lclean the kitchen throw some clothes in the washer take a shower etc kind of books I loved it I think Rita Williams Garcia is a fantastic writer and she derserves all the awards and honors she got for this book This is the first book of hers book I've read but it won't be the last The story is fascinating 3 girls travel to California during the summer of 1968 to stay with the mother who abandoned them years before and the setting is atmospheric I loved reading about the Black Panthers and even hearing the names of TV shows brought back memories of my childhood I had just turned 4 during the summer of 1968 All three girls are delightful but the oldest Delphine is especially strong smart sassy and funny Her maturity and her relationship with her younger sisters is inspiring I highly recommend this book to readers of all ages

  10. says:

    loved it fun read and perfect for young girls and boys i wish i had this kind of book when i was a kid but i'm content knowing that my daughter does by the end as an adult reader i had the warm fuzzies

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