Gold-Winner Book of the Year Award  

Forward Reviews

A Best Book for Young Adults 

American Library Association

Volunteer State Book Award Selection

Garden State Book Award Finalist

Nevada Young Readers Award

The Stones of Mourning Creek pegs Les Becquets as a reader to watch. . . . Fourteen-year-old Francie’s intelligent, fair-minded viewpoint will keep readers hooked.”
Publisher’s Weekly


“On the heels of Kimberly Willis Holt and Kate DiCamillo comes another notable Southern voice. Like the others, Les Becquets deals with a small-town community. Spring Gap, Alabama, in 1966, however, is not a heart-warming or quirky town, but an insidious one, where civil rights have not yet reached and in which residents remain silent of fear of retaliation from the sheriff and his posse. This silence hides the secrets of 14-year-old Francie Grove's mother's death. As Francie pieces together how her mother died, her life also becomes a struggle to deal with the town's rampant discrimination and racism. African-American Ruthie Taylor and her family become Francie's new family after saving her from a snakebite and while Francie's alcoholic father spends many nights away from home. For her friendship, Francie suffers taunting and even violence. Rooted against the hatred bred within the small town are Francie's resilience and her commitment to her friendship with Ruthie; to her first  love, Earnest, the town bastard; and to the truth about her mother. This finely polished and suspenseful tour de force, with its shocking ending, will haunt readers long after the story is finished.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred)


“This gripping story realistically portrays life in the 1960s and offers a look at both the ugliness and beauty of people who tried to make life better for others. A must-read.”
Children’s Literature

 

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