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Louisiana's Way Home Paperback – March 24, 2020
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From the Publisher
"DiCamillo offers a master class in how to tell and shape a story." —Booklist (starred review)
"A thoughtful and finely written story that earns its place among DiCamillo’s other beloved novels." —School Library Journal (starred review)
"For readers who relish thoughtfully constructed plots, well-developed characters, and carefully crafted language, this will be a special treat."—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Populated with unforgettable characters, including kindhearted adults who recognize Louisiana’s dire situation and offer options, this bittersweet novel shows a deep understanding of children’s emotions and celebrates their resiliency." —Publishers Weekly (starred review)
Also by Kate DiCamillo
A Newbery Medal Winner
"A terrific, bravura performance."
– The New York Times Book Review
A Newbery Medal Winner
"Eccentric characters, snappy prose and the fantastical plot give this delightful novel a giddy, over-the-top patina, but the core is big and hopeful, contemplative and bursting with heart. No small feat, even for a superhero like DiCamillo."—Shelf Awareness.
A National Book Award Finalist
As in her previous award-winning books, DiCamillo once again shows that life’s underlying sadnesses can also be studded with hope and humor, and does it in a way so true that children will understand it in their bones. And that’s why she’s Kate the Great."—Booklist (starred review).
A 2001 Newbery Honor Book
—The New York Times Book Review
DiCamillo offers a master class in how to tell and shape a story once all fat has been cut away. Though set in the mid-1970s, there’s fairy-tale quality to this, with heroes, helpers, villains, and one princess looking for home.
—Booklist (starred review)
Readers who first encountered Louisiana in Raymie Nightingale (2016) will be heartened to learn more about her...For readers who relish thoughtfully constructed plots, well-developed characters, and carefully crafted language, this will be a special treat.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
DiCamillo builds a resilient and sympathetic character in Louisiana, and the juxtaposition of her down-to-earth observations with Granny’s capriciousness lightens the narrative and allows for a good deal of humor...The overarching themes addressing forgiveness, love, friendship, acceptance, home, and family (“Perhaps what matters when all is said and done is not who puts us down but who picks us up”) ring honest and true.
—The Horn Book (starred review)
Populated with unforgettable characters, including kindhearted adults who recognize Louisiana’s dire situation and offer options, this bittersweet novel shows a deep understanding of children’s emotions and celebrates their resiliency. Readers will feel as much empathy for Louisiana as they did for her friend Raymie.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
DiCamillo is able to address complex topics in an accessible and ultimately hopeful way. There is never sadness without comfort, fear without consolation. Louisiana’s soul-searching is no exception and further solidifies DiCamillo’s reputation as a skilled storyteller who trusts her readers to wrestle with hard things. A thoughtful and finely written story that earns its place among DiCamillo’s other beloved novels.
—School Library Journal (starred review)
The tale is...gently told, as much fairy tale as realistic story, in language that’s lovely in its plainspoken illuminations, with the focus on Louisiana’s longing for connection and observations about the people she encounters on the road and in the small 1970s Georgia town. Ultimately this is a deeply sweet but not saccharine take on the old story of an orphan child lost and found, and readers won’t have to know the first book to bond with Louisiana and wish fervently for her to find a home.
—Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (starred review)
DiCamillo's funny and hugely likable Louisiana has a marvelous way with words and a spirit that will not rest until she finds her way home, wherever that may be…Louisiana, one of the trio of friends from Kate DiCamillo's Raymie Nightingale, returns in her own beautiful, bittersweet middle-grade stand-alone about finding her home... and herself.
—Shelf Awareness for Readers (starred review)
In this funny yet philosophical melodrama, 12-year old Louisiana Elefante recalls her identity crisis, forced when eccentric Granny claims “a date with destiny."...Disparate elements miraculously mesh — stars, smiles, magic, bologna sandwiches, a pet crow and cakes. Here, a two-time Newbery award winner brilliantly guides the dear Louisiana through lies, secrets, anger and abandonment and toward understanding, belonging, gratitude and forgiveness.
—San Francisco Chronicle
Almost effortlessly, DiCamillo explores some of the biggest, most important questions of life — What is home? What is family? Who decides what kind of person we get to be? — in this deceivingly simple and profoundly moving novel.
DiCamillo peoples her tale with colorful, unforgettable characters, although brave,thoughtful, kind Louisiana is the most memorable of all. Young as she is, Louisiana knows to appreciate rare moments of grace and kindness ("there is goodness in many hearts": the gas station clerk who gives her free bags of peanuts, a woman in the dentist's waiting room who gives her a tin of chocolate chip cookies), and she understands the healing power of forgiveness.
‘You are not alone in the world,’ reads the grandmother’s farewell letter in ‘Louisiana’s Way Home’ (Candlewick, 227 pages, $16.99), Kate DiCamillo’s tender, sorrowful, life-embracing sequel to her 2016 novel, ‘Raymie Nightingale.’
—The Wall Street Journal
This poignant story of loss echoes with themes of hope and redemption.
DiCamillo's genius is finding comedy in tragedy, humanity in darkness. Here, the spirited Louisiana Elefante meets loss head on and finds a way home.
In Kate DiCamillo’s beautiful follow-up to Raymie Nightingale, Louisiana Elefante is back...The book strikes a delicate balance between relating a charming, entertaining story full of colorful characters and imparting a deeply meaningful life lesson about deciding what kind of person to be.
DiCamillo reveals the strength and fight in Louisiana...once again Louisiana finds just the right people to help ground her.
This is a marvelous book, full of heart but without a drop of cheap sentimentality. . . . What a pleasure it is to read a story in which the author’s faith in the goodness of ‘average’ people is set forth with such vigor and confidence. This celebration of kindness is itself a kindness to the reader and an encouragement to hope.
—Dean Koontz, bestselling author
I really really like Louisiana’s Way Home, a slim, handsome novel about grace.
—Betsy Bird, A Fuse #8 Production (blog)
I will read anything Kate DiCamillo writes; the two-time Newbery medalist never disappoints with her stories for younger readers. Her latest finely-crafted tale follows 12-year-old Louisiana Elefante through an unforgettable fable about grace, hardships and discovery.
—Aspen Daily News
It’s hard to imagine this story being told in any other way than through the words and unique viewpoint of Louisiana herself. The characters wouldn’t come to life in the same way, the setting would be ordinary, and the plot might not be compelling.
—Heavy Medal (blog)
About the Author
- Publisher : Candlewick (March 24, 2020)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 240 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1536207993
- ISBN-13 : 978-1536207996
- Reading age : 10 - 13 years
- Lexile measure : 630L
- Grade level : 5 - 6
- Item Weight : 6.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.13 x 0.62 x 7.63 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #43,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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DiCamillo continues her story that she started in Nightingale, this time with a focus on Louisiana Elafonte. Fantastic character development and a tender touch on the things of life make DiCamillo's books stand out from the usual middle fiction. In my mind, she stands with Gary Schmidt and E.L. Kongisburg as my top children's book authors. Louisiana's Way Home is more excellent material from her.
(apologies for any misspellings -- I've had the book read aloud to me! My wife is great)
I liked this book and I think 5th and 6th grade girls will find it inspiring and fun. Author Kate DiCamillo has a solid track record with other award-winning books, and she hits the mark again with this one.
This story brought depth of life into our home and true joy!
From the 9-year-old: Little adventurous Louisiana traveled all the way from Florida to Georgia, leaving everything behind, and finding out the story she thought she knew was all wrong. Then she met the Allen family and that was the closest thing to a family she ever had.