The Glory Field

Author Myers, Walter Dean,
Language English
Publisher
Recorded Books Eight CDs $87.75., 2014




Annotation:

Follows a family's two-hundred-forty-one-year history, from the capture of an African boy in the 1750s through the lives of his descendants, as their dreams and circumstances lead them away from and back to the small plot of land in South Carolina that they call the Glory Field.



Subjects :

  • Juvenile fiction
  • Fiction
  • Families
  • Slavery
  • Discrimination
  • Family
  • African Americans
  • Afro-Americans

Back to Top

Author Illustrator(s) :

Back to Top

Best Books :

  • Adventuring with Books: A Booklist for PreK-Grade 6, 1997 National Council of Teachers of English
  • Books for You: An Annotated Booklist for Senior High, Thirteenth Edition, 1997 National Council of Teachers of English
  • Kaleidoscope, A Multicultural Booklist for Grades K-8, Second Edition, 1997 National Council of Teachers of English
  • Kirkus Book Review Stars, 1994
  • Notable Children's Trade Books in the Field of the Social Studies, 1994 National Council for the Social Studies NCSS
  • Publishers Weekly Book Review Stars, September 1994 Cahners
  • School Library Journal: Best Books for Young Adults, 1994 Cahners
  • YALSA Best Books for Young Adults, 1995 American Library Association
  • YALSA Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults, 1997 American Library Association

Back to Top

State & Provincial Reading List :

  • Young Adult Reading Program, 1996; South Dakota
  • Virginia State Young Readers' Award, 1997; Nominee Virginia

Back to Top

Reading Measurement Programs:


0030546168
Holt Rinehart and Winston (Austin:) 1999.

Lexile, MetaMetrics, Inc.

Lexile Measure 800
Accelerated Reader Points


999999
Scholastic (New York NY:) 1994.

Accelerated Reader
Interest Level Upper Grade
Book Level 5
Accelerated Reader Points 12


0590458981
Scholastic (New York:) 1996.

Lexile, MetaMetrics, Inc.

Lexile Measure 800
Accelerated Reader Points

Reading Counts-Scholastic
Interest Level High School
Reading Level 6
Accelerated Reader Points 14

Back to Top

Reviews :

Andrea Smith (Audiofile, October 2014)
Walter Dean Myers's epic story spans the generations of the Lewis family dating back to Muhammad's arrival in America on a slave ship in the eighteenth century. Although narrator Ezra Knight's performance begins with a jarring, almost staccato, cadence, his delivery smooths out as the characters move toward the twentieth century. Knight's voice is deep and strong, and, when matched with a more natural delivery, lends additional gravitas to the story. His gift, however, is dialogue and characters. Knight's emotional range is impressive, especially since it's continually tested throughout each generation's struggle to define, defend, and celebrate what it means to be a Lewis. A.S. © AudioFile 2014, Portland, Maine Unabridged. 2014 (orig. 1994), Recorded Books, Eight CDs, $87.75. Ages 13 up.
(PUBLISHER: Recorded Books Eight CDs $87.75., PUBLISHED: 2014 (orig. 1994))

Hazel Rochman (Booklist, October 1, 1994 (Vol. 91, No. 3))
Like Haley's Roots (1976), this is the saga of an African American family across 250 years. The story is told through the experiences of one young person in each crucial historical period, beginning with Muhammad Bilal on a slave ship in 1753 and ending with Malcolm Lewis, a contemporary Harlem teenager in search of his identity in a multicultural society. The slavery episode is powerful, but afterwards, this becomes a long, sprawling docu-novel, with little of the taut intensity of Myers' great family quest story, Somewhere in the Darkness (1992). The best episode is set in the 1960s South, when star basketball player Tommy Lewis is tempted to accept a scholarship as a token Negro in an all-white college; instead, he takes part in a civil rights demonstration and chooses a stunning way to expose the official violence that has always kept the races apart. Several characters on all sides of the struggle are drawn with sensitivity and humor, but this book works better as essay than as fiction. The message is urgent and immediate for all of us: "You can't make much progress if you don't leave home, but you can sure mess yourself up if you don't remember where home is." Category: Older Readers. 1994, Scholastic, $14.95. Gr. 7-10.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Susie Wilde (Children's Literature)
This book is an astounding fictional study of the African-American Lewis family traced through two hundred and forty years. Myers wrote this novel to express the changes he saw in the texture of life from one generation to another. He succeeds brilliantly because of the authenticity of his characters; from Muhammad, brought in leg irons from Sierra Leone, Africa, to Curry Island, South Carolina, in 1753, to his descendant, urban-dweller Malcolm, who blends techniques to compose his own kind of music in 1994, and battles to bring his drug-addicted cousin to their family reunion. Myers never lectures; he only creates a stage for his heros and heroines to tell history. His characters expose differences of culture and sentiment by their actions and decisions, while struggling against the societal constraints of each period. They all show love for, and pride in, a family that builds a reputation of self-respect and determination through successive generations. 1994, Scholastic, $ 14.95 and $4.99. Ages 12 to 14.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Kathleen Karr (Children's Literature)
In the tradition of Roots, Myers's novel follows one African-American family starting with its patriarch, Muhammad Bilal, who came to America in 1753 aboard a slave ship, to the present day Lewis family. Generation-skipping vignettes focus on the struggles of this family to maintain both their dignity and their precious land base, the Glory Field on Curry Island, South Carolina. Critical turning points in African-American history motivate each short glimpse into the Lewis psyche: emancipation during the Civil War; emigration North to the cities; and the birth of the Civil Rights Movement. While some of the incidents cry out for a book of their very own, Myers has managed to sketch a valid portrait of the subject through his microcosm family. 1994, Scholastic, $14.95 and $4.99. Ages 12 up.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

CCBC (Cooperative Children's Book Center Choices, 1994)
An ambitious novel tracing the history of an African-American family from its first member to come to this country in 1753 - in the bonds of slavery - up to the present time. The fictitious Lewis family's story begins with a short chapter telling of the capture of eleven-year-old Muhammad Bilal in Sierra Leone, Africa. Each subsequent section of the book moves the story forward in time and follows the family's journey from place to place - from the Civil War and then the turn of the 20th century on Curry Island off the coast of South Carolina, to Chicago in 1930, to Johnson City, South Carolina in 1964, and finally to Harlem in 1994. As the story moves forward in time, it is enriched with greater and greater detail about the daily life of that generation of family members and the social and political climate in which they lived. At the same time that he creates a compelling history of an extended African-American family, Myers paints an unflinching portrait of life for African-Americans in the United States at various times and places throughout this nation's history. Honor Book, 1994 CCBC Coretta Scott King Award Discussion: Writing. CCBC categories: Fiction For Teenagers. 1994, Scholastic, 375 pages, $14.95. Ages 11-14.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Kirkus (Kirkus Reviews, 1994)
A stunning novel about the perseverance and courage of one African-American family from the author of the award-winning Somewhere in the Darkness (1992). Myers begins the story of the Lewis family in Africa in 1753 with the capture of 11-year-old Muhammad Bilal, who is shackled and put on a ship bound for America. The story then skips to 1864 on Curry Island, S.C., where the descendants of Muhammad now live on the Lewis plantation. Two of them, Joshua and Lem, have run away, but Lem is caught tied to a tree as bait for Joshua. Lizzy, Lem's 13-year-old cousin, is seen giving Lem a drink and must flee as well. All three escape and the men join the Union army to fight for their freedom. In 1900, Lizzy's son Elijah stands up to the white men of Curry Island and is forced to leave for Chicago. His daughter, Luvenia, is thwarted in her dream to go to the University of Chicago in 1930, but she defies expectations and succeeds in business. Tommy Lewis, back in South Carolina in 1964, must choose between appeasing the establishment -- and receiving a scholarship to attend college -- or fighting for his ideals. And now in Harlem, talented young musician Malcolm Lewis is responsible for bringing his crack-addicted cousin, Shep, to the Lewis family reunion on Curry Island. In this fluid, simple book, Myers brings to life an entire history of a people, highlighting the Lewis family's commitment and strength. A must read for absolutely everyone. 1994, Scholastic, $14.95. Starred Review. © 1994 Kirkus Reviews/VNU eMedia, Inc. All rights reserved.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Publishers Weekly (Publishers Weekly)
Spanning nearly 250 years of African American history, this emotionally charged saga of the Lewis family traces an ongoing battle for freedom and equality. Beginning with young Muhammad Bilal's journey from Africa in 1753 and ending with a 1990s family reunion set on the plantation where Muhammad was a slave, this series of resonant stories shows how each generation comes of age by taking a stand against oppression. All through the Civil War, Great Depression and civil rights movement, the family's strength and determination continue unabated. In his typically taut, economic prose, Myers (Somewhere in the Darkness) illuminates shadowy corners of history and reveals the high cost-and the excruciatingly slow process-of justice. The obstacles facing the Lewis family will be remembered as clearly as their triumphs, and readers will come away from this novel with both a broader perspective on social conflicts and a more profound understanding of the past. Ages 10-up. (Oct.)
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Ted Hipple (The ALAN Review, Winter 1995 (Vol. 22, No. 2))
A "Roots for young adults," Walter Dean Myers' Glory Field traces one African-American family from its slave origins to present-day Harlem, doing so in a series of episodes that involve five different generations of the same family. Myers begins, briefly, with captured African Muhammed Bilal, who is enslaved on Curry Island, South Carolina, and establishes what becomes the Lewis family, first slaves, then struggling land owners, finally successful and not-so-successful urban dwellers. Though young readers may be a bit frustrated as Myers sometimes ends episodes at climactic moments, they will nonetheless learn through his vivid stories what life was like for Black families in this country, then and now. This well-written and valuable telling of an American history, too often shortchanged in textbook, merits--and will reward-- very reader's attention. 1994, Scholastic, 340 pp., $14.95 and $4.95. Ages 12 up.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Elizabeth Bush (The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books, November 1994 (Vol. 48, No. 3))
The Lewis family of Curry Island, South Carolina is now a sprawling, flourishing clan, but it owes its growth-indeed its very survival-to the fortitude of several remarkable teenagers, whose sacrifices and decisions throughout the family's 250-year history are highlighted in six self-contained but seamlessly interrelated tales. Muhammad Bilal arrives in slave shackles in 1753 and founds the dynasty. Lizzy, implicated in a slaves' escape attempt, must flee the Curry plantation to become a camp follower to a Negro regiment in the Civil War. Her freeborn son Elijah dangerously defies white authority when he comes of age, and like his mother, leaves his home to settle in the North. There his daughter Luvenia sees her dream for a college education crumble, but forges ahead to become the family's first entrepreneur. In 1964 a Lewis teen is torn between the possibility of integrating a Southern university on a "token" basketball scholarship or participating in a civil-rights demonstration. Finally, middle-class Malcolm from the Harlem branch of the Lewises grapples with his crack-addicted cousin on their trip to the family reunion in Curry. As he helps in the final harvest of sweet potatoes from the field where Muhammad (now only a misspelled name in the family Bible) once toiled, Malcolm earns the stewardship of the family's heirloom, a set of shackles which he will pass to the next generation. Plentiful dialogue, spiced with truly witty repartee, will make Myers' contemporary-fiction fans feel right at home in this sweeping family saga; cliffhangers that end each chapter will rivet readers who normally shun lengthy historical fiction. R*--Highly recommended as a book of special distinction. Reviewed from galleys (c) Copyright 1994, The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois. 1994, Scholastic, [288p], $14.95. Grades 5-9.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York NY:), PUBLISHED: 1994.)

Susie Wilde (Children's Literature)
This book is an astounding fictional study of the African-American Lewis family traced through two hundred and forty years. Myers wrote this novel to express the changes he saw in the texture of life from one generation to another. He succeeds brilliantly because of the authenticity of his characters; from Muhammad, brought in leg irons from Sierra Leone, Africa, to Curry Island, South Carolina, in 1753, to his descendant, urban-dweller Malcolm, who blends techniques to compose his own kind of music in 1994, and battles to bring his drug-addicted cousin to their family reunion. Myers never lectures; he only creates a stage for his heros and heroines to tell history. His characters expose differences of culture and sentiment by their actions and decisions, while struggling against the societal constraints of each period. They all show love for, and pride in, a family that builds a reputation of self-respect and determination through successive generations. 1994, Scholastic, $ 14.95 and $4.99. Ages 12 to 14.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York:), PUBLISHED: [1996] c1994.)

Kathleen Karr (Children's Literature)
In the tradition of Roots, Myers's novel follows one African-American family starting with its patriarch, Muhammad Bilal, who came to America in 1753 aboard a slave ship, to the present day Lewis family. Generation-skipping vignettes focus on the struggles of this family to maintain both their dignity and their precious land base, the Glory Field on Curry Island, South Carolina. Critical turning points in African-American history motivate each short glimpse into the Lewis psyche: emancipation during the Civil War; emigration North to the cities; and the birth of the Civil Rights Movement. While some of the incidents cry out for a book of their very own, Myers has managed to sketch a valid portrait of the subject through his microcosm family. 1994, Scholastic, $14.95 and $4.99. Ages 12 up.
(PUBLISHER: Scholastic (New York:), PUBLISHED: [1996] c1994.)

Back to Top

Publication Details:

  Publisher ISBN Notes
Recorded Books Eight CDs $87.75., 2014

Media Type:

9781470392932
1470392933
Austin: Holt Rinehart and Winston, 1999

Media Type: Language Material
420 p. ;
PZ7.M992 ([Fic])
0030546168
9780030546167
Novel followed by narratives and excerpts from related stories and a biographical sketch of the author.
New York: Scholastic, 1996

Media Type: Language Material
375 p.
([Fic])
0590458981
9780590458986
Reprint. Originally published 1994.
New York NY: Scholastic, 1994

Media Type: Language Material
375 p. ;
PZ7.M992 ([Fic])
0590458973
9780590458979

Back to Top