Belle Prater's boy

Author White, Ruth,
Language English
Publisher
New York: Square Fish, 2012




Annotation:

When Woodrow's mother suddenly disappears, he moves to his grandparents' home and befriends his cousin, and together they must face the losses and fears in their lives.



Subjects :

  • Juvenile fiction
  • Fiction
  • Identity (Psychology)
  • Identity
  • Mother and child
  • Cousins
  • Loss (Psychology) in children
  • Loss (Psychology)
  • Unabridged audiocassettes.

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Author Illustrator(s) :

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Best Books :

  • Recommended Literature: Kindergarten through Grade Twelve, 2002 California Department of Education
  • Children's Book Sense 76 Picks, Winter 2001 Book Sense 76
  • Adventuring with Books: A Booklist for PreK-Grade 6, 12th Edition, 1999 National Council of Teachers of English
  • Best Children's Books of the Year, 1996 Bank Street College of Education
  • Books for You: An Annotated Booklist for Senior High, Thirteenth Edition, 1997 National Council of Teachers of English
  • Books in the Middle: Outstanding Books, 1996 Voice of Youth Advocates
  • Books to Read Aloud to Children of All Ages, 2003 Bank Street College of Education
  • Capitol Choices, 1996 The Capitol Choices Committee
  • Children's Books, 1996 New York Public Library
  • Children's Catalog, Eighteenth Edition, 2001 H.W. Wilson
  • Children's Catalog, Nineteenth Edition, 2006 H.W. Wilson
  • Children's Literature Choice List, 1997 Children's Literature
  • Middle And Junior High School Library Catalog, Eighth Edition, 2000 H.W. Wilson
  • Middle and Junior High School Library Catalog, Ninth Edition, 2005 H.W. Wilson
  • Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts, 1997 NCTE Children's Literature Assembly
  • Notable Children's Books, 1997 ALSC American Library Association
  • Notable Children's Trade Books in the Field of the Social Studies, 1996 National Council for the Social Studies NCSS
  • Publishers Weekly Best Children's Books, 1996 Cahners
  • Publishers Weekly Book Review Stars, March 1996 Cahners
  • School Library Journal Best Books, 1996 Cahners
  • School Library Journal Book Review Stars, April 1996 Cahners
  • School Library Journal: Best Books for Young Adults, 1996 Cahners
  • Special Interest Group of the International Reading Association, 1997 Special Interest Group of the International Reading Association
  • Teachers' Choices, 1997 International Reading Association
  • YALSA Best Books for Young Adults, 1997 American Library Association

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Awards, Honors & Prizes :

  • ABC Children's Booksellers Choices Award, 1997 Winner United States
  • Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Excellence in Children's Literature, 1996 Honor Book United States
  • John Newbery Medal, 1997 Honor Book United States

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State & Provincial Reading List :

  • Maud Hart Lovelace Book Award, 2000-2001; Nominee Minnesota
  • Georgia Children's Literature Awards, 2001-2002; Nominee Georgia
  • California Young Reader Medal, 1999; Nominee California
  • Charlie May Simon Children’s Book Award, 1998-1999; Nominee Arkansas
  • Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award, 1998; Nominee Vermont
  • Golden Sower Award, 1999; Nominee Nebraska
  • Iowa Children's Choice Award, 1998-1999; Nominee Iowa
  • Maine Student Book Award, 1997-1998; Nominee Maine
  • Mark Twain Award, 1998-1999; Nominee Missouri
  • Maud Hart Lovelace Book Award, 1999-2000; Nominee Minnesota
  • Nutmeg Children's Book Award, 2001; Nominee Connecticut
  • Rebecca Caudill Young Readers' Book Award, 1999; Nominee Illinois
  • South Carolina Young Adult Book Award, 2000; Nominee South Carolina
  • William Allen White Children's Book Award, 1998-1999; Master List Kansas

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Curriculum Tools :

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Reading Measurement Programs:


9780440413721, 0440413729
Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers (New York N.Y.:) 1998.

Accelerated Reader
Interest Level Upper Grade
Book Level 4.4
Accelerated Reader Points 5

Lexile, MetaMetrics, Inc.

Lexile Measure 760
Accelerated Reader Points

Reading Counts-Scholastic
Interest Level 6-8
Reading Level 6
Accelerated Reader Points 8


9780374306687, 0374306680
Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:) 1996.

Lexile, MetaMetrics, Inc.

Lexile Measure 760
Accelerated Reader Points

Reading Counts-Scholastic
Interest Level 6-8
Reading Level 6
Accelerated Reader Points 8


999999
Thorndike Press (Thorndike ME:) 2000.

Accelerated Reader
Interest Level Upper Grade
Book Level 4.4
Accelerated Reader Points 5

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Reviews :

Pam A. Johnson (Audiofile, August/September 1998)
Woodrow Prater and his cousin, Gypsy, help each other discover the truth about their families while strengthening their own bond of friendship. With a delicate, smooth Southern accent, Elliott reads the parts as a gifted storyteller might perform them. She doesn't individualize voices for each character, but instead becomes a conduit for the story, shaping the words and feelings into thoughts that flow into the listener. Elliott's gently haunting voice appropriately conveys the sense of loss the characters feel and their acceptance of past events. P.A.J. (c)AudioFile, Portland, Maine Unabridged. 1998 (orig. 1996), Random House Audio, Four cassettes, 3.33 hrs., Retail pak, $19.99.
(PUBLISHER: Bantam Doubleday Dall Audio (New York:), PUBLISHED: p1998 c1996.)

Jana Whitesel (KLIATT Review, May 1998 (Vol. 32, No. 3))
This is one of those rare books that transcends age with its timeless story of loss, love and friendship. Gypsy Lemaster and her cousin Woodrow become best friends during their sixth-grade year after the disappearance of Woodrow's mother, Belle Prater. Has Belle left because of foul play, or is she just tired of being shut up in a too-narrow life? Gypsy has troubles of her own due to her father's death. Woodrow's wit and charm help him overcome his crossed eyes, while Gypsy tries to get people to see beneath her beauty to the real person she is. This Newbery Honor Book is wonderfully read by Elliott, whose changing voices add much to the story. Her inflections and enthusiastic rendering of the story make this recommended for all listeners and libraries. Category: Fiction Audiobooks. KLIATT Codes: JSA*--Exceptional book, recommended for junior and senior high school students, advanced students, and adults. 1998 (orig. 1996), Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio, 4 tapes, 3.5 hrs.; Standard cardboard and plastic; reader, plot notes., $19.99. Ages 12 to adult.
(PUBLISHER: Bantam Doubleday Dall Audio (New York:), PUBLISHED: p1998 c1996.)

Paula Rohrlick (KLIATT Review, March 1998 (Vol. 32, No. 2))
Set in Appalachia in the 1950s, this moving story tells what happens when Belle Prater disappears and her son Woodrow comes down from their shack in the mountains to live with his grandparents in Coal Station, Virginia. His cousin Gypsy lives next door, and she narrates this tale about the events of their sixth-grade year. Woodrow is cross-eyed and dresses in raggedy clothes, but he's got a sly sense of humor and tells wonderful stories. Gypsy is a long-haired beauty, but there's a tragedy in her family as well; she still misses her father, who died when she was five. Their friendship helps them to come to terms with their family sorrows and secrets. As Woodrow and Gypsy learn, appearances can be deceiving: "a beautiful place can't shelter you from hurt any more than a shack can." Gypsy and Woodrow are memorable characters, and the reader quickly comes to care deeply about them as they struggle with missing their parents and with more commonplace issues, like dealing with the school bully. White succeeds admirably in evoking small-town life, and tells her tale in authentic-sounding mountain slang. Certain to be a classic; winner of many honors, including a Newbery Honor book, an ALA Notable Book and an ALA Best Book for YAs. KLIATT Codes: J*--Exceptional book, recommended for junior high school students. 1996, Dell/Yearling, 196p. 19cm, $4.99. Ages 13 to 15.
(PUBLISHER: Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers (New York N.Y.:), PUBLISHED: [1998] c1996.)

Jean Palmer (KLIATT Review, March 2005 (Vol. 39, No. 2))
To quote from the review of the audiobook in KLIATT, May 1998: This is one of those rare books that transcend age with its timeless story of loss, love and friendship. Gypsy Lemaster and her cousin Woodrow become best friends during their sixth-grade year after the disappearance of Woodrow's mother, Belle Prater. Has Belle left because of foul play, or is she just tired of being shut up in a too-narrow life? Gypsy has troubles of her own due to her father's death. Woodrow's wit and charm help him overcome his crossed eyes, while Gypsy tries to get people to see beneath her beauty to the real person she is. (A Newbery Honor Book.) Category: Paperback Fiction. KLIATT Codes: J--Recommended for junior high school students. 1996, Random House, Dell Yearling, 196p., $5.99. Ages 12 to 15.
(PUBLISHER: Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers (New York N.Y.:), PUBLISHED: [1998] c1996.)

Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly)
PW gave a starred review to this Newbery Honor book about the friendship between a sorrowing 12-year-old girl and an unusual boy in 1950s Western Virginia: "so fresh that readers can practically smell the lilacs and the blossoming fruit trees." Ages 10-up. (Feb.)
(PUBLISHER: Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers (New York N.Y.:), PUBLISHED: [1998] c1996.)

Recorded Books (Recorded Books, LLC.)
When Belle Prater disappears, her son Woodrow moves to Virginia. Only with his new best friend, cousin Gypsy, will Woodrow share the secret about his mother. nd, n/a, Unabridged Cassette - Library Edition; 21900, $34.75. Ages 13 to 18.
(PUBLISHER: BDD Audio (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: p1998.)

Stephanie Zvirin (Booklist, April 15, 1996 (Vol. 92, No. 16))
When her poor, cross-eyed, hill country cousin, Woodrow, comes to live next door, Gypsy thinks she'll get on the inside track of a family mystery, the disappearance of Woodrow's mother. Gypsy soon learns, however, that Woodrow isn't talking, so she begins concentrating, instead, on his thoughtful nature, puckish charm, and talent for telling grand stories. It's only during odd moments that Gypsy catches a glimpse of Woodrow's real sadness, but to push him to talk about his mother before he's ready might mean Gypsy would have to face up to a painful secret of her own. Several themes neatly dovetail in this unpretentious, moving story set in Appalachia in the 1950s. Humor and insight infuse a solid picture of small-town life as two strongly depicted young characters uncover an important truth some grown-ups never learn. Category: Older Readers. 1996, Farrar, $16. Gr. 5-9.
(PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Rebecca Joseph (Children's Literature)
In this beautifully written novel, Gypsy tells the story of her sixth grade year when her cousin Woodrow comes to live next door. Woodrow's mother Belle had mysteriously disappeared earlier that year and everyone in this small Virgina town has a theory about what happened to her. Gypsy befriends her cousin and attempts to solve the mystery. The closer she gets to the truth, the more memories of her own father's tragic death surface, forcing her to face the facts about his demise. By coming to terms with her own situation, Gypsy realizes that Woodrow and his mother Belle have developed their own ways of dealing with painful memories; a painful yet liberating realization. 1996, Farrar, $16.00. Ages 10 up.
(PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Susie Wilde (Children's Literature)
Ruth White writes of life in the "hollers" of the Appalachians and her novels deliver powerful characters, intriguing plots, and great writing. Belle Prater's Boy begins "Around 5:00 a.m. on a warm Sunday morning in October 1953, my Aunt Belle left her bed and vanished from the face of the earth." The mystery pervades the pages of the book that tell of the relationship of Belle's son, Woodrow and his cousin, the main character, Gypsy. Woodrow has grown up poor and unappealing in physical appearance. His cousin, Gypsy, is noted for her beauty, but wishes she'd be seen for who she really is, not what she looks like. The two are united largely because of their intelligence, wit, and good humor, but also on a deeper level, because both keep unspoken secrets. Gypsy has hidden from herself the horrors of her father's suicide and Woodrow keeps to himself his thoughts about his mother's disappearance. The book creates an air of mystery as Gypsy and Woodrow untangle of the difference between appearance and the genuine. They struggle to find those genuine places within themselves in the context of seeing how their parents have been controlled by facade, rather than truths. 1996, Farrar, $16.00. Ages 12 up.
(PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Joyce A. Litton (The ALAN Review, Fall 1996 (Vol. 24, No. 1))
Ruth White has a strong sense of place in her depiction of Appalachian Coal Station, Virginia, in 1954. Her main theme, the loss of a parent, is a somber one, but she leavens it with humor. Twelve-year-old Woodrow Prater tells fanciful stories about his mother's disappearance a year earlier to silence the curious and to comfort himself. His sixth-grade cousin, Gypsy Leemaster, must come to grips with the reality that she has repressed her father's suicide (when she was five years old) and her discovery of the body. To show her anger at her father, she chops off her waist-length hair which had been his pride. Once Gypsy accepts her loss, Woodrow is able to tell her the truth about his mother. This novel should help young adults who are grieving over a parent. 1996, Farrar Straus & Giroux, 196 pp., $16.00. Ages 12 up.
(PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Betsy Hearne (The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, April 1996 (Vol. 49, No. 8))
Gypsy Arbutus Leemaster-nicknamed Beauty-has fairy tale looks complete with long golden curls, while her cousin Woodrow is cross-eyed, gawky, and awkwardly clad in "hillbilly clothes" that were hand-me-downs to begin with. Beyond outer appearances, though, they have a lot in common. Woodrow's mother has disappeared without a trace, and Gypsy's father is dead. Beyond these facts, we discover the cousins' underlying pain just as they discover their deep friendship for each other during the year Woodrow comes to live with his grandparents, right next door to Gypsy. Woodrow knows that his mother deserted the family (she took some of his clothes and money), and Gypsy knows that her father shot himself (she found his body). Despite these dark themes, much of the novel is light in tone, its natural dialogue spiked with the jokes Gypsy loves to tell and the stories Woodrow spins. Both central and secondary characters are vividly realized in a plot that draws on family dynamics for its tension and energy. The 1950s Appalachian community itself acquires plenty of personality here; White knows her setting well enough to poke fun without sacrificing her affection for the small-town atmosphere. She's also supported her characteristically fine style with a sharpened sense of control developed through two previous books, Sweet Creek Holler (BCCB 10/88) and Weeping Willow (6/92). R--Recommended. Reviewed from galleys (c) Copyright 1996, The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois. 1996, Farrar, [208p], $16.00. Grades 5-8.
(PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Susan Marie Swanson (The Five Owls, September/October 1996 (Vol. 11, No. 1))
Belle Prater's Boy and Amos Leemaster's Girl" would be an accurate, albeit unwieldy, title for this substantial and engaging account of a year in the life of Woodrow and Gypsy, twelve-year-old cousins. Written in Gypsy's voice, the novel opens with her account of how Woodrow came from an isolated holler down to their grandparent's home following the disappearance of his mother. She deftly sketches out their world for us. By page eleven, we know more than a bit of the geography, economy, and gossip of Coal Station, Virginia, and we've entered a 1950s world where picture windows and electric appliances are luxuries, and a jawbreaker is a special treat. Throughout the novel, fragments of mid-century popular culture--movies, songs, comics, folklore--echo the inner lives of the characters. While Belle Prater's Boy portrays children abandoned by troubled adults, the novel is warm and amusing. Gypsy loves to tell jokes, and Woodrow spins stories wherever he goes. Part of the novel's magic is in the way author Ruth White creates funny set-pieces without ever loosening the threads of her narrative. For example, Gypsy's silly joke about a glass eyeball and a set of false teeth breaks the ice when she welcomes Woodrow to Coal Station, and it is also part of the novel's elaborate web of images linked with eyes, sight, and windows. In part a cautionary tale about the danger of trusting in appearances; this is also a story about the vexing challenges that the suffering of adults poses for children who are forming their own identities. The twelve-year-old cousins develop an intimacy that goes far beyond a conspiracy between two only children, and their relationships within their extended family have real depth and texture. In October 1953, Woodrow's mother, Belle Prater, has vanished, and Gypsy's father, Amos Leemaster, is seven years dead, and yet the two are ever-present. By the time the apples ripen in 1954, the cousins understand more about the complex and unhappy adults who left them behind--and about themselves. 1996, Farrar Straus Giroux, 196 pages, $16.00. Ages 10 up.
(PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux (New York:), PUBLISHED: 1996.)

Enid Stephenson (Carousel 19, Winter 2001)
Coal Station is a small town in the Appalachians where Gypsy (the narrator) lives with her step father and mother. Woodrow comes down from the mountains to live with them after his mother disappears. There are mysteries (one stemming from Gypsy's nightmares), there is humour and, above all, there is the picture of 1950's life in small town America. Award winning in the States, this rare book conjures up a complete period. Category: Older. Floris Books, £4.99.
(PUBLISHER: Flyways (Edinburgh:), PUBLISHED: 2001.)

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Publication Details:

  Publisher ISBN Notes
New York: Square Fish, 2012

Media Type: Language Material
196 p.:
PZ7.W58446 ([Fic])
9781250005601
1250005604
Includes questions for the author.
Originally published New York: Farrar Straus Giroux 1996.
Edinburgh: Flyways, 2001

Media Type: Language Material
192p. ;
(813.54)
0863153550
9780863153556
Thorndike ME: Thorndike Press, 2000

Media Type: Language Material
207 p. ;
PZ7.W58446 ([Fic])
0786228857
9780786228850
New York: Bantam Doubleday Dall Audio, 1998

Media Type: Nonmusical Sound Recording
4 sound cassettes (200 min.):
0553478982
9780553478983
Unabridged.
New York NY: BDD Audio, 1998

Media Type: Nonmusical Sound Recording
4 sound cassettes (3 hrs. 38 min.):
(F)
0807286818
9780807286814
Read by Alsion Elliott.
Sound cassette.
Unabridged
New York N.Y.: Bantam Doubleday Dell Books for Young Readers, 1998

Media Type: Language Material
196 p. ;
PZ7.W58446 ([Fic])
0606126104
0440413729
9780440413721
9780606126106
"A Yearling book."
"Yearling Newbery"-Cover.
Originally published New York: Farrar Straus Giroux 1996.
New York: Farrar Straus Giroux, 1996

Media Type: Language Material
196 p. ;
PZ7.W58446 ([Fic])
0374306680
9780374306687

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