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Glory Be Hardcover – January 1, 2012


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The Best Books of 2012
Best Books of 2012 This book has been selected by our editors as one of the Best Middle Grade Books of 2012.

Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 680L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press; 1St Edition edition (January 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0545331803
  • ISBN-13: 978-0545331807
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #144,580 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Each year, Gloriana Hemphill celebrates her Fourth of July birthday at the community pool. But the summer before her twelfth birthday, in 1964, Hanging Moss, Mississippi, is in turmoil, and that turmoil reaches right into Glory’s life. Yankee “freedom people” have infiltrated the town, rousing rabble and insisting the white-only pool be desegregated. The town council, in response, has closed the pool “for repairs,” indefinitely. And so Glory’s summer, once a promise of happy tradition, is now fraught with unwanted change. First-time novelist Scattergood has a deft hand with characterization, fully realizing the supporting players, from Frankie, Glory’s best friend and son of the bigoted town council chief, to Jesslyn, her teenaged older sister, to Laura, a girl visiting from Ohio while her mother sets up a free clinic. In Glory herself, tilting on the threshold of adolescence, Scattergood paints a balanced portrait of childlike self-interest and awakening integrity. This moving, intimate look at America’s struggle for civil rights, as seen through the narrow lens of one growing girl, will spark interesting discussion. Grades 3-6. --Thom Barthelmess

Review

Praise for Glory Be

"Scattergood's effective snapshot of the fight against segregation, one town at a time, makes personal the tumultuous atmosphere of the times." —Publishers Weekly

"This moving, intimate look at America's struggle for civil rights, as seen through the narrow lens of one growing girl, will spark interesting discussion." —Booklist

"This coming-of-age story offers a fresh, youthful perspective on a pivotal civil rights period...Glory is an appealing, authentic character whose unflinching convictions, missteps, and reflections will captivate readers." —School Library Journal

"Judging by the way my daughter leaped on the book, Glory Be should appeal to the same 12-and-under fans of the Dear Canada faux historical diary series...I join my daughter — who is only on Page 90, but is already drafting her own glowing review of the book for her school paper, and who plans to propose the title to our mother-daughter book club — in encouraging you to read Glory Be with your own children." —The Montreal Gazette


More About the Author

Augusta Russel Scattergood grew up in a small town in Mississippi. She has since lived in North Carolina, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, California, Rhode Island, New Jersey, and Florida- twice! Although if anybody asks where she's from, Mississippi would be the answer.

Augusta is former school librarian, a book reviewer and an avid blogger. GLORY BE, her debut novel, was named one of Amazon's Top Twenty Middle School books for 2012 and received the SCBWI Crystal Kite Award for her region. A second novel, THE WAY TO STAY IN DESTINY, set in Florida and told by a baseball-loving, piano-playing boy, will be published by Scholastic in January, 2015.

For more information, please visit her website: http://www.augustascattergood.com/

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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It provided a great look at a difficult time in history.
Jpoz
I really liked Glory Be because some parts of it I was on the edge of my seat.
Dan Foley
I thought this book was a wonderful story about a very painful subject.
Nancy M. Brewer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By C. E. Selby on January 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Set in the 1960s in Mississipp, Glory is an eleven-year-old white girl who has a fourteen-year-old sister. They live with their minister father and the maid/housekeeper, a black woman named Emma. There mother is dead. Yes, this is a typical southern middle-class family. It is summer, and Glory is looking forward to swimming in the pool--the whites only pool--and her up-coming birthday. She is also a reader--this helps one to believe the first-person narrative the author has chosen--with a special affinity for Nancy Drew mystery books.

And the novel has a bit of that flavor. But also I see the influence of Harper Lee in this novel with the first person narrator, the mother who is dead, the black housekeeper, the father who represents virtues.

And it is that historical time when Yankee--you know, those do-gooders who just aren't welcomed--come to the South to help with desegregation. And indeed a mother and her daughter have arrived, a daughter Glory's age. They meet in the library.

And I am not going to tell any more of the story except to say that I am old enough to know that this is very accurate and one that I am sure young adults as well as actual adults would enjoy reading. I suspect the many young adults will know little of this history although I think the author has done a very good job of providing enough information to help young readers.

I could easily see this being used as a classroom teaching tool. As a retired English teacher I know I would have used it.

This is like putting "The Help" and "To Kill a Mockingbird" together for adolescents. Really great writing.
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34 of 36 people found the following review helpful By A Mississippi reader on January 4, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This author tackled a painful subject, one that isn't being taught in many schools today. But a topic that needs to be taught! After reading the book, I can promise it is one you will want to read WITH your children and grandchildren and discuss how important these changes were. She writes about the South as only a true southerner could. Characters come alive and become friends you will remember. Such an important book in my view, I bought two copies of Glory Be to donate to the library at the school our grandchildren attend!
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Barbara O'Connor on December 22, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An important story of sisterly love, friendships, racial tension, all wrapped up in a pitch-perfect Southern setting. Scattergood is a debut author to watch. Add this one to your list.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Janet McLaughhlin on April 1, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Augusta Scattergood has captured the era of the Freedom Riders with grace, dignity, and honesty. "Glory Be" is a story children would enjoy reading simply because it's a good read. They won't even know they're getting a history lesson. There are too many kids who don't have a clue of what the Civil Rights Movement was all about back in the '60s. What better way to get the information across than by this eminently readable book?

Gloriana June Hemphill puts me in mind of Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird. Both are feisty, likable characters who learn a tough lesson during a hot summer month in the South. But TKAM was written for adults, its syntax too complex for most young minds. "Glory Be" is written for children. A line of dialogue in the first chapter (and also the chapter's title) let's you know that this is a novel kids will relate to. Glory can't wait to get to the community pool to cool off. She tells her friend, Frankie, to hurry up. "It's so hot I can't hardly spit," she says. I can't help but think that Glory and Scout would be great friends if they'd lived in the same era. With this book, our kids can experience, at a safe distance, what both of those protagonist did. That the world is not fair, but if we face it head on, we can learn and grow. And just maybe make it a bit better.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Carol Baldwin on February 3, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Glory Be (Scholastic, 2012) spans two weeks in the summer of 1964 when Gloriana Hemphill turns twelve. In these eye-opening weeks, Glory becomes aware of the racial prejudice that permeates her Mississippi town. When the local pool ostensibly closes for repairs, Glory takes it upon herself to figure out the real reason behind the closing. In an act of bravery, she writes a scathing letter to the editor of the local newspaper decrying the prejudice which drove the Town Council's decision.

Since I am also writing historical fiction that deals with race relations in the South, it is interesting to see what events Augusta Scattergood drew upon to write her novel. The story takes place in the middle of Freedom Summer and the author folded in real events that happened in towns near her in Mississippi. The librarian and civil rights workers in Glory Be are based on individuals who Scattergood met. I enjoyed the description of Elvis Presley's house before it became a shrine, and how she included Robert Kennedy's visits to a black church in the area.

I was mostly drawn to Emma, the black woman who took care of Glory and her sister Jesslyn after their mother's death; she appears to be the wisest individual in the story. When Glory tries to figure out if the pool has been closed because it has cracks, Emma answers, "What's broken is that some folks don't seem to like anything changing. Everybody's got to stay the same in this part of town." (p. 34) In this simple statement, Emma sums up the main theme of the book.

Glory changes during these two weeks. She goes from being a self-centered child who is only worried about the neighborhood pool being open for her birthday party, to someone who fights for the rights of others.
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