Monday, November 13, 2006

Book Review: One Mississippi

I remember seeing this book when it was first published and thinking it might look kinda good. But I almost never buy a hardback book of an author I don't know about, so I passed on it. But I picked it up a few weeks ago when I saw it in the Browsing section of the library.

This story is told through the eyes of Daniel Musgrove, a teenage boy who moves from Indiana to Mississippi when his father is transfered. It isn't easy for him to fit in at school, and to make matters worse his first day of school is the first day of desegregation, so the culture shock is even worse. But luckily for him Daniel makes friends with another boy at school who is a bit of a social outcast, Tim.

The plot of this books is too complex to describe in detail, so I won't go into it here. Childress does a great job of writing about the eccentries of Southern living and he infuses the story with humor. There are dark spots in this book, however, and most of it centers around Tim. It is fairly obvious early on that Tim is a troubled kid, but Daniel (who is a great kid), doesn't see anything other than his best friend. And because of that he is himself drawn into some situations that he probably wouldn't have gotten himself into otherwise.

This book was a quick but enjoyable read that uses humor to touch on a lot of serious subject, yet still takes them seriously enough that as a reader you are moved by the events and genuinely care about the characters.

Lindsey's Grade: A-

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