on July 10, 1999
Our love for the Logan Family began when I read Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry aloud to my children, ages 7 and 10. My husband, intrigued by the story, began to sit in on the readings. The Logans became a part of our family, so naturally, we continued reading their story in Let the Circle Be Unbroken. This continuation of their story is even better than the first book. Let the Circle Be Unbroken is a meatier story than Roll of Thunder, intertwining more historical events into the storyline than the first book. The reader gets a better overall feeling for the hardships and government programs of the Depression Era, the cruel treatment of farm laborers, the fledgling agricultural labor unions, and the disparities between North and South in their treatment of Black citizens. Yet this history never eclipses the narrative of the Logan Family. Author, Mildred Taylor, does a marvelous job of weaving history into a storyline which still keeps the reader emotionally invested in the Logans. We are looking forward to the continuation of the Logan saga in The Road to Memphis!
on March 8, 2004
Stacey, Cassie, Little Man, Christopher-John, Mama, Papa, Hammer, Mr. Morrison, Bud and his daughter. Wait, back up, Bud and his daughter, were they in the first book? No, and they cause quite a stir, but that's usual for them. Why do you ask is that usual? You'll just have to read on to find out.
The book starts out a little slow. It heats up when Bud, Mama's cousin, shows up. Bud had gotten Married TO A WHITE WOMAN! They had had a daughter who stays with the Logans for a while. While she is there, she learns what it means to be black. Also while she is there, Stacey goes to find work (without telling them) and worries the Logans. A lot of the book is spent looking for him. Oh yeah, you're probably wondering what happened to T.J. Well, you find out before Bud comes, but I'm not telling you either way.
I would defiantly rate this book a five. It is a lot better than Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, in my opinion anyways. The action starts sooner than in Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry and Let The Circle Be Unbroken has an overall better plot. While reading, I couldn't put the book down. I first decided to read it to find out what happened to T.J., however, by the end of the book that was in the back of my mind. The addition of Bud and Suzella (Bud's Daughter) defiantly improved the book, but not even that is what I was thinking about. I was thinking about Stacey.
Cassie is the protagonist in this book, as she was in the first. In the beginning of the book, Cassie is upset at Stacey because he is acting all grown up and ignoring her. Then when Suzella comes and Stacey talks to her, Cassie becomes jealous of Suzella. Cassie is an intelligent girl and she loves and cares for everyone, even the people others find strange. Something did happen to Cassie that caught me off guard but I don't want to give too much away. Cassie is very nice, however, she easily gets upset.
One very important scene comes about 2/3 into the book. It begins when Stacey kisses everyone goodnight and everyone is shocked because he hasn't done that in a long time. As Cassie is getting into bed Stacey calls Cassie onto the porch. Stacey gives her his knife which she had been wanting for a long time. Then Stacey kisses her and goes to bed. The next morning the house was full of panic and tears. Stacey had left to find work and left a note in his place.
Another "big" scene happens at the very end of the book. Stacey had been found and they were driving home. As they pulled up the driveway the dogs started barking and lights in the house came on. Big Ma, Little Man and, Christopher-John (who hadn't gone to get Stacey) come out of the house.
"David, ya'll bring that boy?" Big Ma asks
"Yes Ma'am, Big Ma. They sure did," answers T.J.
All in all, Let the Circle Be Unbroken is head and shoulders above Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. As I said before the book starts out a little slow, but the plot is great. Cassie, again, is the protagonist and narrator. Bud and Suzella bring much conflict and Stacey brings much sadness. This book again shows the hardships blacks had to deal with and does it better than in the first. How can a book get any better? Is the question I asked myself after finishing. Maybe the next in the series will be I thought. I seriously doubt it. This book was amazing!
on November 15, 2002
The year is 1935. Cassie Logan and her colored family live in Mississppi in the middle of the Depression. Every day, they face hardships, from the trial of a misled friend, to the everyday discrimination from the white people. Every year, they worry about the land, which is their life, on which the cotton grows. The cotton that pays their taxes, feeds them, and clohes them. In Let The Circle Be Unbroken, sequal to Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, Cassie learns the hardships of being black. She learns of discimination, both of the hatredand the white's supposed superiority. But that is not all. When her cousin Suzalla, who is jealous of the attention that everyone pays to her. asie, howerer, later learns about the difficulty of haring to chose between two races, and of being a stuck in the middle. When Suzella later leaves, her feelings have changed. But when her brother, Stacey, runs away fearing that the taxes can't be paid, Mrs. Lee Annie Lees decides to try to vote, and many farmers both black and white have to plow down their cotton, she does not adjust her feelings so easily. It will take her family and friends a lot of courage to pull them through these problems.
When I read this book, I felt that I was in the book, seeing, feeling, and hearing everything. This book is a bit on the sad side, but it doesn't overdo it. I can feel that the author, Mildred D. Taylor, put a lot of planning and thought into it. I appreciate her time, for this book is well worth taking my time, and I could find few faults.
I gave Let the Circle Be Unbroken 5 stars because the book took me straight into the plot and stayed there. It let me see into the worst of the discrimination of the time, and showed how a brave family pulled their way through. I would reccomend the book to anyone, for I think it would be worth their time, too.
on March 21, 2006
Let the Circle Be Unbroken
By: Mildred D. Taylor
The book Let the Circle be Unbroken by Mildred D. Taylor is the sequel to Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry. Let the Circle be Unbroken is a story about a young black girl named Cassie Logan and her Mama, Papa, Big Ma, and three brothers. Stacey, Christopher-John, and Little Man. This story takes place somewhere in the deep south in 1934. Cassie's adventure starts when her friend TJ is going to be killed for something he didn't do. Then her Cousin Suzella tries to make people think she is a white when she really isn't. Later when one of Cassie's dearest friends, Mrs. Lee Annie, tries to vote she gets kicked out of her home because she is also black. While all this is happening Mr. Granger, an important white man who owns a lot of land, is trying to get the Logans to sell their land. This is a story of spirit and the truth of how families should stick together no matter how rough their life gets.
I thought that Let the Circle Be Unbroken was a great book for people of all ages because it has a lot of adventure and fighting for boys and for girls it has Cassie the main character and narrator of the story. I liked this book because I could picture the whole story in my head and that made me understand it better then I would with a different book.
on April 28, 1998
This book touched me inside. I had read ROLL OF THUNDER HEAR MY CRY before this, and I would have to say this was better as a sequel. I didn't live through the time of racism, but reading this book made me feel like I did! The way it described how bad the Logan family was living because of the racism going on, I felt like I was living through it. But then again, there were some parts that weren't very believable, and that's why I rated it the way that I did. The thing that I probably liked most about this book, is that how close the Logan family was. From me to you, this is a MUST READ BOOK!
on June 28, 2013
It is 1934, during the Great Depression, and eleven year old Cassie Logan, who was first introduced in the 1977 Newbery Medal winner Roll of Thunder, Hear Me Cry, lives on a farm in rural Mississippi with her father David, mother Mary, older brother Stacey, younger brothers Christopher John and Little Man, and grandmother Big Ma. Her Uncle Hammer Logan frequently visits from Chicago. The Logans' friend, T. J., must go on trial for murder and face an all-white jury. Then Mama's cousin Bud, who married a white woman, brings his daughter Suzella from New York City to stay with the Logans for a while, and when she tries to pass for white there are humiliating consequences. And their neighbor, Mrs. Lee Annie decides that she wants to register to vote but faces a lot of opposition, including that from her landlord. Finally, Stacey runs away to work in the cane fields of Louisiana. Can the Logans find out where he is? And will he return home?
Several people thought that Let the Circle Be Unbroken was better than Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry. I read the latter and basically liked it. I didn't care for the sequel quite as much. I didn't think that the plot was as tight and focused. In addition to some common euphemisms (e.g., doggone, blasted), the "h" and "d" words are each used a couple of times, and the conversations seem filled with "Lord" this, "Lordy" that, and "Lord a mercy" as exclamations. The phrase "for God's sake" also occurs. I did appreciate the fact that despite the frightening and turbulent times, the Logan family stands together and stands proud with courage, love, and understanding that enables them to face prejudice and mistreatment. The suffering of African-Americans in pre-civil rights times is a story worth telling, and Mildred Taylor tells it well. My biggest question concerns age-appropriateness. The book is recommended for ages 9-10 and up. First, I would think that the rather long chapters and some of the subject material might make it difficult to hold the attention of many nine and ten year olds. Second, there are some discussions that a lot of parents might not feel are appropriate for that age group.
For example, in talking about how white men have used black women, an incident is cited where a black man was messing with a white girl giving a description of the consequences--they "cut off his privates." At age eleven, Cassie is worried about her flat chest. A teenage girl, Jacey Peters who has been the object of Stacey's interest, is found to be with child out of wedlock by a white boy. And there is a somewhat lengthy confrontation which includes charges of a black man bedding down a white woman. For these reasons, I would not recommend the book for anyone under at least thirteen, perhaps even sixteen. By weaving history into the storyline, Taylor generally gives the reader a good feeling for the hardships of the Depression Era. Let the Circle Be Unbroken is the fourth book, chronologically, in a five-book series that is based on stories of her family that she heard while growing up. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry was written first. There are two "prequels," The Land and Song of the Trees, and one additional sequel, The Road to Memphis.
on April 20, 2015
This was book #5 (book 6) of the Logan series written by Ms Taylor. She didn't write in the beginning of this one this is what she wrote in the first pages of "The Land" (book #1 of the series) and it applies to this book as well... "...Although there are those who wish to ban my books because I have used language that is painful, I have chosen to use the language that was spoken during the period, for I refuse to whitewash history. The language was painful and life was painful for many Africian Americans, including my family." So if your pre-teenage child is reading this it may allow you to open up discussion to things (s)he may never have had to encounter in our society today (as far as the language). But she writes true to her words, if she had changed the language then the book wouldn't have been as Historically OR family accurate to be as good as it was!
This is such a wonderful true story. Ms Taylor takes the stories she has grown up listening to from her grandparents and uncles-aunts and takes the stories her parents and uncles and aunts have told her and combine them for this story! Knowing that made it even more wonderful. This is book 6 of this series of books. There are 8 books in this 'Logan' series which many people don't realize since book #4 apparently was Ms Taylor's first book she wrote for this series. Since it won awards and she had so much more history to write she took off with it and make it into a series. Some of the books are 'novels' and others are smaller 90 page 'children's' books (looks like labeled for ages 7-11 according to Amazon) but as an adult I have loved all of the books and am looking forward to reading the last book in the series.
Now with that being said... I am white and I nor any of my family have ever had to deal with what 'freed' slaves or a child from a mixed family has had to deal with. In reading this within the first few chapters my heart went out because the same emotions that was written within this book during the depression-segregating era is the same emotions that one of my friends is dealing with with her mixed race granddaughter in today's society. I couldn't believe that these emotions are still the same today!
In this book the Logan children have to go to a segregated school away from the white children. This story is one of great emotions as every night the Logan family have to wait and worry if the 'night riders' will come, (she went into more detail in previous books about that issue but it's still very 'real' in this book) The Logan's dad has to travel a lot to find work to pay the mortgage on their farm; but while he's gone they get a friend that no longer has any family (due to racism) and he lives in the shed but takes care of the family throughout the book. And with the children, especially the oldest son getting to be a teenager the Mama and the children doesn't like Dad leaving. The kids still want to go do the things white folks do (like use the inside bathroom at the courthouse)but the adults have to really be with them simply because they don't know the repercussions if they do these things. In this book there is the lingering repercussions of a black friend of theirs and what he got into trouble with when he did become friends with two white boys... the older kids are allowed to go to the trial where he is put in front of a white judge and a jury of white men. The children simply doesn't understand but they try. The oldest son thinks he's old enough to leave home and bring back money for the family but again he soon learns what life is like for a black person outside his protective home. Wonderful book, personally still like the first book "The Land" the most out of this series but I love that time of our History as well...But Ms Taylor has written all these books almost as equals and I'm glad I am reading them
on July 25, 2014
Summer reading assigned by school. My daughter read the first one in this series last year for school and was ok with it. This is the fifth one....don't know why they skipped 2/3/4.... And it was a struggle to get through. She is a good reader and will finish a popular novel like divergent or hunger games in an evening, but if bought this in paperback at the school store.....she was really slogging through....so I re bought on the kindle and told her 10 percent a day and she was done in 10 days.......still wouldn't buy if the goal is fun......
on June 6, 2015
My daughter absolutely loves this book. If you know the story/saga of the Logan family, you will love this book. My daughter says it has lots of descriptive words, is very informative about how people were treated earlier in our nation's history.
on May 21, 2011
Let The Circle Be Unbroken is the 2nd book in the Logan family saga, it was written in 1981 by Mildred D. Taylor. This one is much longer than the first, 394 pages (while the first was 200 i think) and it drags in some places but overall its an amazing book and definitely worthy as a sequel.
It continues where the first one left off, TJ Avery, who is accused of murdering a white man, is actually getting a trial, which in those times people didn't feel was necessary for black people. His lawyer is Mr Jamison, the kindhearted white man who always tries to help the Logans. This part of the book was very reminiscent of "To Kill A Mockingbird", the killer are two white boys who frame the black boy, and the lawyer proves logically that it can't be TJ and was more likely to be the white boys. But just as in To Kill A Mockingbird, with an all white jury in the 1930s, logic doesn't apply, more important than justice was the color of the boys skin, and so he is found guilty and sentenced to death.
This book once again shows the hardships of black people in this time in history, the unfairness of the trial, Cassie realizing she can't use the water fountain or the indoor toilet, the old black woman Lee Annie wanting to vote and not being able to, and kicked off her land for even trying, etc etc.
Another addition to the story is Suzella, Cassie's cousin, who has a black father and a white mother. Because Suzella is mixed she is the eye candy for all the black community, they all try treat her like a queen. Stuart Walker, a white boy who likes to take advantage of black girls, thinks Suzella is white and treats her with respect, something he doesn't do with any black person, but when he finds out the truth he tries to do something horrible to her father.
This book also tries to tie in history with the story. It takes place in the Depression Era and many families, both black and white, are losing their homes because of the low price of cotton. A union is trying to form consisting of both blacks and whites, but the plantation owner Harland Granger breaks it up because the union would burn a hole in his pocket.
I really enjoyed this book overall but I feel they left it unfinished, so that's when I noticed there's a 3rd book, "The Road To Memphis". Yay! I will read this one and then review my thoughts on it.