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The Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Levine

The Lions of Little Rock (original 2012; edition 2013)

by Kristin Levine

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Read for Historical Fiction Novel Assignment.
  gmustain | Dec 7, 2014 |
Marlee is a little girl who has a great fear of speaking to anyone that is outside of her family. Because of this, Marlee does not have many friends at her school. This changes when Marlee meets Liz, the new girl at school. Liz helps Marlee to overcome her fear of speaking, but it looks like that is all going to change when Liz leaves the school due to rumors that she is an African American girl who is trying to pass as being white The two girls decide that their friendship is more important and take on integration while ignoring the dangers it could cause their families.

This chapter book tackles the historical topic of integration in the school systems. Though children reading this book now may not have to think about issues of integration, there may be other factors that are influencing their friendships. Reading historical books can help children to connect the school topics that they learn about history with their home life readings. ( )
  acahil3 | Oct 14, 2014 |
Integration in Little Rock in 1958 from the perspective of a middle school student .
There is a lot to this book. Different takes on the main theme. A friend of the main character who tries to 'pass'.
The effect of the school boycott on families. Intolerance, fear and hatred of changing by those who cling to their beliefs. Very well done, a great middle school read and upper elementary. Definitely a history lesson and discussion starter for an American history class.
SSYRA 2014 ( )
  librarian1204 | Jun 18, 2014 |
Beautifully written book about a girl named Marlee. She meets a new girl at her school, and they become fast friends. Her new friend, Liz, though has been going to school and passing herself off as a white person. When the town finds out, Marless is shunned because she has a black friend. Lots of racial tension and historical accurateness regarding the integration of schools in the South in the early 60s. ( )
  skm88 | Jun 8, 2014 |
This is a story of a friendship during a time when segregation was still present, and racism was very common. Marlee was a shy, quiet girl until she met Liz, who turned out to be colored. Marlee didn't talk to very many people, because she was afraid they wouldn't like what she had to say. She recites prime numbers to calm herself. Marlee didn't understand why it was wrong to be friends with her, because the color of Liz's skin didn't matter to her. They remained friends, but they had to keep their friendship a secret. Liz taught Marlee how to speak what she was thinking, and Marlee taught Liz to control her anger. Throughout the book, their friendship was tested as the fight for integration in the schools began. Hatred and racism reared its ugly head, and put the girls in danger numerous times. They were forbidden to see each other, but they knew that they would always be friends deep down.
  sbasler | Mar 11, 2014 |
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To my mother, for telling me about the lions
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I talk a lot. Just not out loud where anyone can hear.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 039925644X, Hardcover)

Two girls separated by race form an unbreakable bond during the tumultuous integration of Little Rock schools in 1958

Twelve-year-old Marlee doesn't have many friends until she meets Liz, the new girl at school. Liz is bold and brave, and always knows the right thing to say, especially to Sally, the resident mean girl. Liz even helps Marlee overcome her greatest fear - speaking, which Marlee never does outside her family.

But then Liz is gone, replaced by the rumor that she was a Negro girl passing as white. But Marlee decides that doesn't matter. Liz is her best friend. And to stay friends, Marlee and Liz are willing to take on integration and the dangers their friendship could bring to both their families.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:46:28 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

In 1958 Little Rock, Arkansas, painfully shy twelve-year-old Marlee sees her city and family divided over school integration, but her friendship with Liz, a new student, helps her find her voice and fight against racism.

(summary from another edition)

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