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Fleeing his mother's confusing drunken advances, a boy runs away and finds work in the beet fields of North Dakota. Wielding a hoe for long, hot days, he learns about cruelty from the farmer's wife and about kindness from his Mexican coworkers. Later an attraction to a girl glimpsed only once leads him into accepting a job driving a tractor, but a brush with the deputy sheriff sends him running again, only to be taken in by a sleazy carnival as a roustabout. He learns to shill for the geek, a fake wild man of Borneo who bites the heads off chickens, and yearns for Ruby, the voluptuous hootchy-kootchy dancer. During the summer the boy learns about life and people and his own ability to work and survive, and when Ruby invites him into her bed, his transition to manhood is complete.
While the sensual scenes and occasionally gritty language may make this novel problematic for adults, there is not a 15-year-old boy around who would not find that this poetic, powerful novel speaks to his soul. (Ages 14 and older) --Patty Campbell --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This was a great book. And I will read it again. And I will also tell my parents to read this book.Published 4 months ago by Jamie Smith
My daughter had to read for school book club - not her favorite book. Good for boys.Published 12 months ago by Nan2
This is a great book one of my favorites!! Also a classic by Gary paulsen and he never fails to impress with his workPublished on January 14, 2013 by Brent waller
I just read this short novel in two sittings and LOVED it. The Beet Fields, by Gary Paulsen, is about growing up and becoming a man, and takes you to this mental place with raw,... Read morePublished on July 16, 2009 by M. Clark
Although previous titles by Gary Paulsen were enjoyed, this title is inappropriate for young teenage readers. Read morePublished on July 6, 2009 by J. Ball
THE SHIPPING TIME WAS GREAT.THE COPY WAS PERFECT.ONCE AGAIN I AM SO VERY SATISFIED WITH AMAZON.
The Beet Fields: Memories of the Sixteenth Summer
The young boy never stopped working, went on until the day was done, and learned about the world and life in just one... Read more
Although I loved this book, I was hestitant to include it on my classroom shelves for 8th graders. Now that I am now teaching high school, I decided to include this book on the... Read morePublished on March 10, 2006 by DSB
The kid left his home and went to work on a beet field. He made friends with the Mexicans. He followed then around and worked with them. Read morePublished on February 10, 2006 by Vtown Tigers