Sunday, February 7, 2010

A Year Down Yonder

A Year Down Yonder A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck 

Awards: State Award; Booklist Editors' Choice; Parent's Guide Book Award/ Honor Book; ALA Notable/Best Books; Newbery Medal; SLJ Best Book; ABC (Assoc. of Booksellers for Children) Choice; Blue Spruce Award/Nominee; YALSA Best Books for YA 

Series: Sequel to A Long Way From Chicago

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Fifteen year old Mary Alice is a city girl from Chicago. The year is 1937 and there is a recession and her father is out of work. So her parents need to send her to live with her (somewhat scary) Grandma Dowdel in rural Illinois for a year.

The adventures of Mary Alice and Grandma Dowdel had me laughing out loud. From dealing with bully Mildred Burdick, to catching hooligans who destroy privies during Halloween, to the Legionnaires Armistice Day turkey shoot, this book is a year worth of eye-opening experiences for Mary Alice. Both she and her grandmother come to a close understanding of each other, but not exactly in a touchy-feely kind of way. I though this book was very sweet and I would recommend it for 6th grade and up.

This book won the Newbery in 2001 and its prequel was a Newbery Honor Book. I can't believe I read the second book first, but I will definitely read more by Richard Peck in the future.

Also reviewed by:
Have I missed yours?

Book 13 of 100 for the 100+ Reading Challenge
Book 6 of 10 for the Book Awards IV Reading Challenge
Book 8 of 50 for the New Author Challenge
Book 8 of 50 for the RYOB Challenge
Book 4 of 12 for the Historical Fiction Challenge
Book 14 of 25 for the MG Book Challenge 
Book 8 of 50 for the YA Reading Challenge

Source: BookMooch


bermudaonion said...

I love Grandma Dowdel! I heard Richard Peck speak at SIBA and he is quite a character himself.

LisaMM said...

Hi Tricia!

I'm looking for a way to contact you but can't find an email address on your blog. I've got a question for ya.. would you pls email me at Thanks!

Anonymous said...

LOVE this series! Mary Alice and Grandma Dowdel's relationship evolves into something amazing. Made me appreciate my grandmother even more, though she is less eccentric. Just FYI, there is a Christmas book featuring Grandma Dowdel, too.