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The Beat on Ruby's Street Paperback – June 1, 2016
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"A beautifully realized and researched novel, The Beat on Ruby's Street allows us to see the Beat movement through Ruby's perspective, a girl raised by well-meaning but inattentive artists. Neither Ruby or Zark ever make easy choices, in the best possible way." --Ruth Virkus, co-creator of Tyme for Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel by Megan Morrison
"A journey into the heart of the Beat Generation and the complexities of family relationships. Zark's writing is sensitive and highly engaging." --Katia Novet Saint Lot, author of Amadi's Snowman
"Narrated by precocious eleven-year-old Beat girl Ruby, this coming-of-age tale, set in a world of rebels, rule-breakers and dream makers, is engaging and full of heart." --Annie Wilder, author of House of Spirits and Whispers
From the Author
I first learned about the Beats when my older sister brought me to a play in the Village and shared stories about the poets who walked its streets in the 1950s. Though long gone, their poems and books were in all the book stores and I started to read them. When I was in college, I visited the City Lights bookstore in San Francisco and heard more stories about Beats and the readings they had there.
Years later, my sister and her family moved to Perry Street and I visited them every Friday after work. I began to imagine a young girl, trying to find the poets who were legends in her time. Would she want to be a poet herself? What would life be like for her?
Turned out it was kind of rough--rougher than I thought it would be, and full of surprises. But the story kept growing until it became The Beat on Ruby's Street. Now I want to share it with you.
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Top customer reviews
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Ruby Tabeata is an old soul living in a 1950s Beat community with her family. Because of her unconventional upbringing, Ruby is torn from her family and placed in a group home, not to be returned unless her parents agree to conform to society’s expectations. Refusing to accept this turn of events, Ruby carries out a plan of her own.
Ruby’s voice is thoughtful and engaging throughout the story; poetic, yet very much what an eleven-almost-twelve year old voice should be – interested in things like leotards and golden birthdays. Her fear of “the man” and guilt over “his” entrance to her life, family, and community are completely relatable.
The Beat culture and ’50s pop culture are woven into the story through Ruby’s eyes and avoids feeling like a history lesson or game of trivia. Vocabulary and other references are presented the same way.
Overall, The Beat on Ruby’s Street is a charming and uplifting read. It’s easy to settle into and relate to, and I highly recommend it for preteen girls.
The novel credibly recreates the milieu of the New York Beats, both in the liberation and affirmation that it offered to many. At the same time, through Ruby's eyes we clearly see how in the renegotiation of traditional family structures, there was more liberation offered to men, than to women and children.
Most recent customer reviews
This historical fiction novel grabbed my interest from the very beginning.Read more
Title: The Beat on Ruby’s Street