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The Beet Fields Paperback – February 8, 2011
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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.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
While this isn't a book for younger readers, it will most definitely find an audience with teenagers who are familiar with Paulsen's writing and yearn to know more about his hardships and adventures when he was their age. Readers who enjoyed Hatchet and its sequels will find that the details of Brian's survival in the wilderness find an equally appealing match in the stories of Paulsen's own survival on the road in The Beet Fields.
The book was easy to read and understand. Information is well organized and in order. The strongest aspect of the book was that a sixteen-year-old boy ran away from home and supported himself by doing odd jobs. The ending and beginning need to be improved because the end just ends and the beginning does not give you any background.
I gave four stars to the book because it is an incredible book, and has a lot of details. I would recommend the book to people who enjoy adventure, and suspense, because it takes you all over South Dakota. Paulsen is trying to tell us that there is more to people then we think, and that we should get to know people before we put them down. I think it is an important message because I get to know people first, like he dose in his books. Paulsen passes his message successfully through his books.
This book is about a boy with a troubled home life so he decides to take a chance and help himself. He finds many friends along the North Dakota prairies that give hope but his old life continues to trouble him. He has troubles with the law, girls and again his former life.
This book seems somewhat real but is still fictional. It fits right in with the rest of the books that you may have read about being lost in this world. The characters in the book are seemingly real almost all are hard working farm hands or illegal Mexicans and some are alcoholics. The book does not have a ton of action but it kept me wanting to know more.
I suggest that anyone who has ever read a Gay Paulsen book and liked it read this book. I personally think this book is one of the top 15 books I've ever read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was a great book. And I will read it again. And I will also tell my parents to read this book.Published 16 months ago by Jamie Smith
My daughter had to read for school book club - not her favorite book. Good for boys.Published 24 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