Synopses & Reviews
Frannie doesn't know what to make of the poem she's reading in school. She hasn?t thought much about hope. There are so many other things to think about. Each day, her friend Samantha seems a bit more ?holy.? There is a new boy in class everyone is calling the Jesus Boy. And although the new boy looks like a white kid, he says he's not white. Who is he?During a winter full of surprises, good and bad, Frannie starts seeing a lot of things in a new light - her brother Sean's deafness, her mother's fear, the class bully's anger, her best friend's faith and her own desire for ?the thing with feathers.?Newbery Honor-winning author Jacqueline Woodson once again takes listeners on a journey into a young girl's heart and reveals the pain and the joy of learning to look beneath the surface.
"The narrator of Woodson's 2008 Newbery Honor title is fascinated with Emily Dickinson's famous couplet 'Hope is the thing with feathers/ that perches in the soul.' Frannie grapples with its meaning, especially after a white student joins her all-black sixth-grade classroom. Trevor, the classroom bully, nicknames him 'Jesus Boy,' because he is 'pale and his hair [is] long.' Frannie's best friend, a preacher's daughter, suggests that the new boy truly could be Jesus ('If there was a world for Jesus to need to walk back into, wouldn't this one be it?'). Set in 1971, the book raises important questions about religion and racial segregation, as well as issues surrounding the hearing-impaired (Frannie's brother is deaf). Johnson, who also voiced Woodson's Hush, sensitively renders Frannie's narration, and her slow delivery affords listeners the opportunity to fully experience Frannie's keen perceptions. Subtle changes in inflections distinguish the many characters' voices in a skillful performance that enlarges the book's already wide appeal. Ages 9 up. A Putnam hardcover. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Woodson's Newbery Honor-winning story is now available on audio. "Feathers" takes listeners on a journey into a young girl's heart and reveals the pain and joy of learning to look beneath the surface. Unabridged. 6 CDs.