Synopses & Reviews
It's a place where life and love begin, and loss is borne.
Mothers give birth in the borning room. The dying take their departure there.
Ouside the Lott family's Ohio farmhouse, the Civil War rages, slavery falls, and the world marvels at the wonder of electricity. Inside, within the walls of the borning room, Georgina Lott will experience her life's greatest turnings. Across the years, she discovers womanhood and first love, experiences the mourning that comes with loss, and, as did her mother and grandmother, at last takes her place in the room as another precious life is about to begin.
The borning room is a room that figures large in the life of an Ohio farm girl born in 1851. Through its doorway pass the members of a free thinking family, bearing news of the world beyond the window: talk of runaway slaves, the siege of Vicksburg, seances, chloroform, electricity. In this heartfelt and haunting work, an account of one life, one family, and one room widens into a panoramic view of the human seasons and the procession of generations. "From an innovative, highly talented novelist and poet . . . memorable characters and valuable glimpses of social history in a beautifully crafted novel. Deeply rewarding." —K.
Notable Children's Books of 1992 (ALA)
1992 Best Books for Young Adults (ALA)
1992 Fanfare Honor List (The Horn Book)
Best Books of 1991 (SLJ)
1991 Books for Youth Editors' Choices (BL)
1992 Teacher's Choices (IRA)
Notable 1991 Children's Trade Books in Social Studies (NCSS/CBC)
1991 Notable Trade Books in the Language Arts (NCTE)
1991 Golden Kite Award Honor Book for Fiction (SCBW)
1991 Choices: The Year's Best Books (Publishers Weekly)
100 Books for Reading and Sharing 1991 (NY Public Library)
Bulletin Blue Ribbon Books 1991 (C)
Children's Books of 1991 (Library of Congress)
1992 Books for the Teen Age (NY Public Library)
In 1851, the Lott family's borning room is reserved for childbirth and death. Through its doorway pass the members of a freethinking family, bearing news of the world beyond the window: runaway slaves, Vicksburg, seances, chloroform, electricity. A panoramic view of human seasons and the procession of generations. 1992 Golden Kite Award Honor Book for Fiction.
About the Author
Paul Fleischman grew up in Santa Monica, California in a house with a printing press, a grand piano, a shortwave radio, and his father—childrens author Sid Fleischman. Playing recorder in early music consorts led to his books of verbal duets—I Am Phoenix, Joyful Noise (winner of the 1989 Newbery Medal), and Big Talk. His novels built from monologues include Bull Run, a 16-character account of the Civil War's first battle, and Seedfolks—the chronicle of the first year of a Cleveland community garden. His interest in theater inspired his young adult novels Mind's Eye, Seek, and Breakout, all of which revolve around the spoken word. His historical fiction includes Saturnalia and The Borning Room. He's written nonfiction and picture books as well, including Time Train, Weslandia, and Sidewalk Circus.
Alongside the Newbery Medal, he's won a Newbery Honor Book, the Scott ODell Award for Historical Fiction, the PEN West Literary Award, the California Young Reader Medal, and most recently was a finalist for the 2003 National Book Award. He makes his home in the village of Aromas, California.