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Homesick (Puffin Modern Classics) Paperback – March 1, 2007


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 and up
  • Grade Level: 3 and up
  • Series: Puffin Modern Classics
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; Reissue edition (March 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142407615
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142407615
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.5 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,311,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Fritz's Newbery Honor-winning memoir of growing up during a turbulent time in China's history is "rich in the telling observations of sights, sounds and people," said PW. Ages 8-12. (Aug.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Review

"Fritz draws the readers into scenes from her youth in the turbulent China of the mid-twenties. . . . A remarkable blend of truth and storytelling." --Booklist, starred review

More About the Author

"The question I am most often asked," Jean Fritz says, "is how do I find my ideas? The answer is: I don't. Ideas find me. A character in history will suddenly step right out of the past and demand a book. Generally people don't bother to speak to me unless there's a good chance that I'll take them on." Throughout almost four decades of writing about history, Jean Fritz has taken on plenty of people, starting with George Washington in The Cabin Faced West (1958). Since then, her refreshingly informal historical biographies for children have been widely acclaimed as "unconventional," "good-humored," "witty," "irrepressible," and "extraordinary."In her role as biographer, Jean Fritz attempts to uncover the adventures and personalities behind each character she researches. "Once my character and I have reached an understanding," she explains, "then I begin the detective work--reading old books, old letters, old newspapers, and visiting the places where my subject lived. Often I turn up surprises and of course I pass these on." It is her penchant for making distant historical figures seem real that brings the characters to life and makes the biographies entertaining, informative, and filled with natural child appeal.An original and lively thinker, as well as an inspiration to children and adults, Jean Fritz is undeniably a master of her craft. She was awarded the Regina Medal by the Catholic Library Association, presented with the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award by the American Library Association for her "substantial and lasting contribution to children's literature," and honored with the Knickerbocker Award for Juvenile Literature, which was presented by the New York State Library Association for her body of work.

Customer Reviews

I dont read very much but when i do they turn out to be really good one's.
Andrea Ganas
In the autobiography Homesick, the author Jean Fritz showed that being true to yourself is important.
K. Faith
This book tells the true story of a young American girl who grew up in China in the 1920's.
gdoug

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on February 15, 2004
Format: Paperback
A really remarkable book. Jean Fritz is author of many an exciting children's biography. If you've read "Why Don't You Get a Horse, Sam Adams?" or "Can't You Make Them Behave, King George?" then you know her works already. Turning her talents towards a slightly more recent history, Fritz takes a good long look at her own life. Having grown up in China in the early 1920s, this is a story of a child trying to discover where she fits in.
First of all, you have to admire Fritz's candor. The very first thing she does is state in the Forward that she considers this a fiction. Though the facts are true here and there, the author has taken some liberties with time and memory. She obviously cannot remember everything that happened perfectly, so she has filled in the gaps as best as possible. Though, she points out, "it does not feel like fiction to me. It is my story, told as truly as I can tell it". THANK YOU, Jean Fritz. How many books do we read where the author claims that everything within the book is the whole truth and nothing but the truth, while taking wild leaps in narrative and interpretation? Finally, we have an author that admits that much of this book may be considered fiction, though she herself remembers it as fact. Such honesty is admirable, and exceedingly rare in non-fiction writers.
As for the story itself, Fritz is very good at what she does. The writing here is superb. Living in a very sketchy time in China's history, little Jean was in the unfortunate position of living in a country where foreigners were finally not being tolerated with much kindness any longer. Often times Chinese peasants rail against Jean for being the kind of "foreign devil" that is a bane to their country.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Caroline K. Poon on April 10, 1998
Format: Paperback
Homesick: My Own Story is one of those rare books that feel entirely true. So many times an author's memoir is written "for" a specific audience, so that it takes on the tone of what the readers expect or are hooked by more than by what's true, but Jean Fritz's account of her childhood in China feels absolutely accurate, as if she is writing down the girl she once was. I found the novel an interesting read when I first read it, and when I read it again upon moving to Shanghai, I found it familiar. Even though so many years have passed, many things are the same, here and all over the world. A different sort of story for the un-narrow-minded, Homesick is the kind of discovery that we should all make about ourselves.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Levviathan on December 5, 2003
Format: Paperback
I read this book this year, when my mom sent me a box of books to camp over the summer. All the rest were Dear Americas so this was the first one I picked up. Once I picked it up, I couldn't put it down. I read during softball and got hit on the head. I read during dinner and stained my favortie shirt. I tried to read dujring instructional swim but my counselor took the book away from me. I read under the covers and I got into trouble when my division head came in. I finished it in under eight hours. It's the best non-Dear America book I've ever read. It tells a very interesting story, full of humor and wit. Jean Fritz is an incredibly talented writer, who managed to cover two years time in an average-sized book. Each chapter is a story all its own and also funny. I recommend this book to anyone who wants a really good historical fiction/nonfiction story.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on February 1, 2005
Format: Paperback
I gave this book four stars because I didn't like the sad parts. The book was well-written. The author helped me see the story of a ten-year-old girl whose father works for the YMCA in China. She knows she's going to go home to the US but that there are lots of obstacles. After reading this book. I understand more about the history of China and the coolies and the culture. I am a fan of Jean Fritz books in general.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 28, 1997
Format: Paperback
" Homesick: My Own Story" was a real eye-opener for me. I first read it when I was in seventh grade and I still remember what it was like: Looking through Jean's eyes I saw China in a rough time; I learned where the Yangtse River was and about the junks that floated upon it; and how people would get rides in rickshaws pulled by men eager for the money.
I broiled through all of her worries and troubles, grinned in happy times, and cried when everything seemed hopeless.
I liken this book to "Number the Stars" by Lois Lowry. "Homesick..." did not have as much action the way through as that story, but it certainly holds the same endearing qualities as "Number the Stars".
This book read very fluently and I came to know much about something I had never been told about. I recommend "Homesick: My Own Story" to anyone interested in different cultures and a personable young lady who would rather have the name Marjorie instead of Jean
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 15, 1999
Format: Hardcover
We loved this book because we were able to do an author study on Jean Fritz. We have read many of her books. The fifth grade curriculum requires us to study American History. Reading books by Jean Fritz has allowed my students and I to approach history with an open mind. Getting away from the text books has been enjoyable for all of us. Learning through literature is very effective and we have grasped many historical concepts by reading these books.
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