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Darby by Jonathon Scott Fuqua
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I enjoyed this book, which was made from a combination of creative liberties as well as some influence from true stories and interviews the author conducted while working for a museum in Baltimore. The story follows a young white girl in the south, and how she deals with the racial injustices around her. ( )
  alarso2 | May 19, 2014 |
If "To Kill a Mockingbird" is one of your favorite books, then you will thoroughly enjoy "Darby." Though the plots are totally different, and Darby bears no resemblance to Scout, the comparison is inevitable.

Darby is a 9 year old girl in Marlboro County, SC in 1926. She tells us about her family, her friends, and her life... and gradually into the events that form the main plot of the book. Darby's family is what would have been the equivalent of upper middle-class in 1926. Their house is big and has been in the family for several generations, but it is worn. Her father is a well respected man in the community, owning a dry-goods store. They keep up a small farm on their land. Darby's two best friends are Beth, the daughter of the town's wealthy attorney, and Evette, the daughter of one of her father's poor black share croppers.

Darby's father's help is quietly sought in the night, when a young black boy is caught trying to steal a chicken from a neighbor, and is beaten to death as a result. The event becomes something that everyone in town knows something about, but no one wants to talk about it. Racial tensions are raised.

Evette is a smart girl who dreams of being a newspaper reporter in New York when she grows up, and she inspires Darby to try her hand at writing articles herself. When the local newspaper editor agrees to print Darby's columns, the first is a huge hit, because it is "cute", which Darby finds somewhat embarrassing. Her second story she asks Evette to edit for her, and as a result it is a much better article. But her third story is about race relations, from her 9 year old perspective, and sets the entire county on edge, and leads to the climax of the story.

Classified as "young adult", this book would be an excellent choice for anyone old enough to read it. ( )
  fingerpost | Jul 22, 2012 |
PLUS -
* This is such a lovely book, sadly now out of print in the UK, but is a favourite of mine. It's like a junior version of To Kill A Mockingbird (also a favourite).
* In some ways it's a really gentle story of family life in 1920s deep south America, with 9-year-old Darby as our narrator.
* In other ways it's really quite hard hitting. Darby's best friend is a black child, Evette, and when Darby questions how unfair life is for her friend she finds that she and her family are up against the local members of the Ku Klux Klan.
* This really is writing for kids at it's absolute best.

MINUS -
* Nothing at all....I'd give it more than 5 stars if I could!

OVERALL -
* One of those books that I really would recommend for almost everyone. If you can get hold of a copy, read it. ( )
  CaroTheLibrarian | May 27, 2010 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0763622907, Paperback)

"Darby's first-person narrative is frank and immediate . . . expressing what it's like for an ordinary white kid who suddenly discovers evil — and courage — where she lives." — BOOKLIST

A Book Sense 76 Top Ten Pick

A National Council for the Social Studies Notable Trade Book for Young People

An International Reading Association Notable Book

"The root of this work stems from a series of oral history interviews the author conducted. . . . Darby symbolizes how one person, even a child, can make a difference." — KIRKUS REVIEWS

"Her voice, rich with southern idiom, rings true." — THE HORN BOOK

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:16:21 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

In 1926, nine-year-old Darby Carmichael stirs up trouble in Marlboro County, South Carolina, when she writes a story for the local newspaper promoting racial equality.

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Candlewick Press

An edition of this book was published by Candlewick Press.

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