Read Little Audrey by Ruth White Online


"What else would you wish for?" Daddy says. "If you could have anything in the world, what would you wish for?" I shrug. "Oh, I don't know. Maybe . . ." "Maybe what?" "For us to live better than we do." He does not say anything. In 1948, award-winning author Ruth White lived in Jewell Valley, a coal camp nestled between the hills of southwestern Virginia, with her mother,"What else would you wish for?" Daddy says. "If you could have anything in the world, what would you wish for?" I shrug. "Oh, I don't know. Maybe . . ." "Maybe what?" "For us to live better than we do." He does not say anything. In 1948, award-winning author Ruth White lived in Jewell Valley, a coal camp nestled between the hills of southwestern Virginia, with her mother, still mourning for a baby who died four years earlier; her father, who spent the weekends and most of his pay out drinking; and her three older sisters, Audrey, Yvonne, and Eleanor. Told in Audrey's voice, this is how the author imagines Audrey's experiences during a time of great trauma for the White family – and what happened before they were able to live a better life.This snapshot of life in a coal camp, complete with everyday heartaches and joys – as well as stories, songs, and jokes – is Ruth White's most personal work to date.Little Audrey is a 2009 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year....

Title : Little Audrey
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780374345808
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 146 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Little Audrey Reviews

  • Linda Lipko
    2019-05-05 04:08

    Life was difficult in 1948 for the White family. Living in Southwestern Virginia in a coal mining town, Audrey is the oldest of four girls. The house is a shack. The food is sparse and the family is dirt poor. This story is the real life tale of the author. She chose to give voice to the story through her eldest sister, and the book is written from her perspective.Scrawny from lack of food and illness, Audrey looks at the world through eyes that need large glasses and her awkwardness defines her as a crumbly, skinny, nail biting girl who longs for security. She asks for little of life. She simply would like things to be better, for the family to have food and decent housing, and for a mother who is not depressed and a father who is not alcoholic.This book is depressing. It is 145 pages of raw sadness.It is well written and I recommended it. Read it though on a sunny day, sit in your chair surrounded by warmth and give thanks for the blessings you have in the realization that many do not have even the basic necessities.

  • Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
    2019-05-03 05:09

    This autobiographical story is about a family so poor that many times I wanted to reach in and give the kids food or clothing or books or crayons or paper. Made me once again grateful for all the things I had when I was growing up. Audrey, the narrator, speaks in the dialect of the area, which helps bring the southern Virginia coal mining camp setting vividly to life. I especially liked the descriptions of the one-room school and the teacher, Miss Stairus, who had such a positive impact on so many of her pupils. This book is a quick read, which I highly recommend for upper elementary on up.

  • Katherine
    2019-05-08 01:24

    This is based on the true story of a tragedy that happened to the White family in 1948. Ruth White, the author, reconstructed the events of their lives on the Jewell Valley coal camp with the help of her sisters' memories, and told from the perspective of her oldest sister, Audrey.1. This is going to be hard to sell. There isn't as much plot development as there is general description of their lives. She uses words and phrases like "before I was borned" and "worsh" and "orta" to reflect the accent in Virginia, which would make it harder for some kids to read. 2. It felt like reading a historical renactment -- where the characters know what life is like now, and are trying to relate the differences to what life is like back then. The narrator doesn't come out and say that today we have indoor bathrooms, but the way she describes the outhouse it's like she knows that they aren't common now.3. This is a really good description from the perspective of a child of life in company housing. They have scrips to use at the company store, they have heard tales of coal miners being buried alive, they see the coal miners come home unrecognizable, they don't have a Frigidaire or indoor plumbing. But with all the bleakness, they still have regular childhood issues -- bullies, dreams, favorite teachers, favorite candy, best friends, favorite clothes and each other.4. The title, Little Audrey, comes from a comic strip about the shortest girl in the world -Audrey- who finds herself in terrible situations, and ends up laughing at the end of them. Audrey White learns to appreciate Little Audrey in the end.

  • Cheyen Schenck
    2019-05-25 04:19

    This book is about a family in a coal mining community in the 40’s. Written through the narration of Audrey, the oldest daughter of four, the last weeks before her father’s tragic death are described as she continues to grow morally and emotionally.While reading Little Audrey I was immediately thrown into a different world. It was challenging my own thoughts of how people grew up years ago when coal mining was a means of staying out of poverty. The book makes you reflect on what we have now as a society compared to what we didn’t back then. I feel the most intriguing part is that the book made me ask how many people are still living in a similar situation where ends are barely getting met while those around me are doing just fine. This is a wonderful book to relate in a classroom about differences in the world that are not just in another country, but happened in our own and how those in these situations dealt with their emotions.

  • Sarah
    2019-04-24 03:16

    Another poignant story from this amazing author! White pulls another event from her own life and crafts a story so strong and so true I felt I was living it myself. She continues to be one of my favorite authors.In 1948 Audrey White and her three younger sisters (the three pigs) are living in a coal mining camp in southwestern Virginia with their parents. Despite recurring waves of severe depression Mommy manages to scrape together meals and just enough change to treat the girls to a movie each Saturday night. Daddy works the mines but spends most of the company scrips and his free time getting drunk. Eleven year old Audrey, thin and weak from scarlet fever, begins to heal physically and emotionally. As she grows stronger her eyes are opened to the possibility of a better life.But, sometimes life gets worse before it gets better. Sometimes a tragedy is a blessing.

  • Meaghan
    2019-04-27 00:16

    I have to say I really liked Audrey's voice. Normally I can't stand books written in dialect, but this provided an authentic Appalachian twang and it wasn't overdone. This is a good enough story for 9- to 12-year-old girls and might be useful if a school class was doing a unit on Appalachia. However it seemed kind of dull to me; not a whole lot happened in it. Even the ending seemed anticlimactic. But I still think kids would like it.

  • Cindy Dobrez
    2019-05-11 06:24

    Historical fiction based closely on White's own childhood, told from the perspective of her older sister, Audrey. The family lived in a coal mining camp with an alcoholic father who spent the hard-earned scrips on drinking and gambling, leaving the mother to creatively provide food and supplies for the four girls (a 5th younger sister died earlier). Despite the hardships, their is humor and hope. A family photo of the five girls and mother is a welcome addition.

  • Karlan
    2019-05-17 02:08

    The author based the novel on her own family's experience living in a remote coal mining town. Audrey, Ruth's oldest sister, is portrayed with great sympathy. The family's hard life is heartbreaking but gave the author a fascinating subject.

  • LauraW
    2019-05-04 02:27

    I read this one in one day. I enjoyed its setting and characters. It would give well to do kids insight into what life is like for very poor kids.

  • Debbie McNeil
    2019-05-11 06:24

    Great for adults, a lovely memoir. Sadly, low kid appeal; one of those kid lit written for adults books.

  • Roberta
    2019-05-20 01:12

    This is a heartbreaking story of life as it was for Little Audrey. It's just a sad story and I didn't find anything inspirational about it :( I think it's sad that life was better when her father was not around. I think it's sad that life was harder than it had to be because he used the money that should have been used to feed his family for his excessive drinking. I think it's sad that for life to get better for them, he had to die. That is just sad on every level. Even the ending doesn't tell how life got is just them leaving the home they can no longer live in because he's dead and isn't working in the mines anymore so they can't stay there. I look at all the other reviews of four and five stars and I actually feel somewhat guilty for thinking what I think of this book....this is someone's story. This one wasn't for me :(

  • Pyrate Queen
    2019-04-29 04:08

    Twelve-year-old Audrey lives in a mining camp with her three other sisters and her parents. Her mother is trying to deal with the death of a seven-month-old from spinal meningitis and her father is just trying to deal with life as a coal miner. Life gets more complicated for the family when tragedy strikes shortly after the beginning of the summer and life for Audrey and her sisters will never be the same again.

  • Patsy Parker
    2019-04-26 01:34

    This is a short book, but worth reading if you like history based on someone's real life, someone you've never heard of, that is.If you are not from the southern part of the United States, you may not enjoy the dialect, but I am, so I thought it was okay.It's a great coming-of-age story.

  • Keely Wells
    2019-05-14 22:38

    This book is about a little girl who is living in Jewell Valley, Virginia. The city is a coal mining camp for families of the coal miners. Audrey is an eleven year old and recently is recovering from the scarlet fever which has made her very skinny. The book is written from the perspective of Audrey who is the real author’s older sister. Audrey’s mom is trying to recover from losing a baby while her dad is a drunk who leaves little money for the family for food. Audrey has three younger sisters and they are all trying to live at ends meet. Throughout the book, the reader experiences what life was like for the families of coal miners back in 1948. This book provides pictures of Audrey and her family; this is a great strength for this book because the reader has images to relate to the story being told. When you read books that are non-fiction, it is hard to relate to the characters or imagine how real the story actually is. What I would consider a weakness for this book is how it is written. This book is about a very different era in time and that can sometimes be hard for students to show interest because they might think it is boring. This book demonstrates the criteria for Notable Books for a Global Society by demonstrating unique language and style, honors and celebrates diversity and meets criteria of quality for the genre. Audrey’s family goes through a tragedy when their father dies. The whole community comes together to support the family of a big loss. Many of the families bring them food even when they can barley feed themselves. Even in times of desperate measures, families are still helping families even when everyone is struggling just the same. I think the author does a great job of narrating through Audrey. Even though the author is not Audrey and Audrey is actually her older sister in real life, she still thoroughly explains her experiences through thought and words. The reader can believe that Audrey is the one actually telling the story. She uses language that is age and time appropriate which makes sense since she lived through this era of time. I think the author gives the voice of Audrey a great sense of depth that allows the reader to relate to her right off the back. I think this book follows very well with the genre of historical fiction. The key criteria of a historical fiction book include accuracy, events, language, culture and dress (Tunnels & Jacobs, 2012). All of these key elements are portrayed during the time period. The events that happen throughout the story are accurate and believable. The book is very accurate in all of these qualities.This is the book we chose to use in our classroom because we felt that it best demonstrated the criteria for a Notable Book for a Global Society. We feel that this book would best appeal to the students because some students could probably relate to this story like how her dad dies and the community comes together to support her family. Loss is a very common when it comes to students in the classroom. Eventually they will all experience loss so this book could help them open up about it or prepare them for it. It is also a pretty easy read whether the teacher reads it out loud to the class or the class individually reads it to themselves. The book is also in first person through Audrey so that way students can see where she is coming from and can see her point of view.

  • Kayla Davis
    2019-04-26 03:12

    This book is about a young girl named Audrey who lives with her family in a coal mining camp. Audrey is a sickly looking girl who has suffered monumental weight loss and damaged eyesight due to her recent bout with scarlet fever. Since most of the family’s money goes to support her alcoholic Father’s habit, her and her sisters are often hungry and it doesn’t look like she’ll be gaining weight anytime soon. However, when her mother snaps out of one of her common dazed states, she uses all of the money to buy groceries and with bellies full, Audrey begins to wish that her father won’t come home. Unfortunately, one day Audrey’s wish comes true when her father gets into a fatal accident while driving drunk with his buddies. But the sorrowful event that initially burdens the family with grief will also provide new opportunities for betterment and the chance for healing from the past. The book was definitely a piece of quality literature just by the general standards of having a good plot, setting, and characters. It was a very engaging read and the plot had a lot of conflict, tension, and mystery in it. There was the poverty of the family, the bullies from school, the alcoholic father who was physically and verbally abusive, and the dazed mother who seemed to suffer from depression, but for most of the book you just don’t know why. The author used such great description that as a reader you could literally imagine what the mining camp must have looked like, and smelled like, and how the people looked and behaved. The book’s discussion and portrayal of grief and of the passing of a loved one was also realistic and gave great unexpected insights. However, the book’s main topic was what really stood out as unique – there are not many books about life inside coal mining camps. Overall, the book is very well rounded and there are no weaknesses that really stand out. Perhaps, some readers would critique how the author gave little information about when Audrey’s father’s drinking problem actually began and what caused it, but it seems that this was a strategy of understatement that was left up to the reader to consider and postulate. The main themes of the book are poverty, family problems, friendship, and grief. I appreciated that the book was so raw and honest when it came to the grief and experiences of the family after Audrey's father died. This book could be used to teach about coal mining camps in the mid 1900s. I would recommend this book for 4th-6th grade students.White, R. (2008). Little Audrey. New York, NY: Douglas & McIntyre Ltd.

  • Becky Birtha
    2019-05-15 22:23

    For some reason, I find it hard to resist children's novels packaged in a small or square format. Perhaps publishers deliberately present certain kinds of literary works in this way-- I don't know. Two books that I picked up recently met my high expectations for books of their size, and I was struck by the similarity in their content, though the stories are set years apart. In Listening for Crickets, a contemporary novel, Jake is a fifth grader who can barely read and has gotten into a couple of fights in school. Dad can't keep a job and drinks too much, but his real problem is anger management. Mom worries about her weight and the bills, and tends to blame Dad, but has a role, too, in the fighting the couple can't seem to avoid. Jake's relationship with seven year old Cassie, who suffers from asthma and shares his room, is more like that of a parent than an older brother. In compelling first person, present tense narrative, author David Gifaldi captures the fear, tension, embarrassment, and constant hypervigilance experienced by children in a family situation that is not so uncommon, and their need to create safe space. Without ever being judgmental, the story reveals class issues from the inside, and builds to a conclusion that brings some relief-- but there are no easy answers. Ruth White's Little Audrey takes place in a coal mining camp in southwest Virginia in 1948. Based on the family in which White grew up, it is also told in first person, present tense, from the point of view of White's older sister Audrey, the oldest of four living children, and introduced by a photograph of their mother and five daughters (including the baby who died before this story begins). With generous details, White paints a vivid picture of the culture, customs, and hardships of that life, including another father who drinks too much, a mother who's often emotionally unavailable due to depression, and engaging eleven year old Audrey, trying to get enough to eat, avoid the class bullies, and have a few dreams for a better life. While Gifaldi's Jake made up stories about dragons to distract his younger sister from their problems, White's Audrey escapes in reading books. Like the other book I've read by Ruth White, The City Rose (written when she was Ruth Miller), the story encompasses both tragedy and hope.

  • Jordan Croom
    2019-05-18 02:34

    This book is a shining example of a multicultural book. It shows readers that a book doesn’t have to be able a far off country or people of color to represent a different culture. This book tells the story of Audrey and her family who live in Jewell Valley, in the late 1940’s. Jewell Valley is home to the Jewell Valley Coal Company, where her father John Ed works long hard days in the dark damp coal mine. The people of this coal based town do not live a life of luxury, in fact most of the families live in poverty, living from paycheck to paycheck just trying to get by. After contracting scarlet fever, Audrey lost a lot of weight, and was in need of glasses. Now as she is recovering, she struggles with the fact that she looks different than the other people in her town. The hardships of their everyday life begin to catch up to them and they have to face the harsh realities of their situation. Audrey’s mom is struggling to recover from the loss of a child, and her father spends all of their extra money and then some on liquor, coming back to the house drunk more often than not. This book gives the reader a snapshot into the tough life of these coal mining families, and helps you experience this very different culture. In the classroom, this book would be a great book to read aloud together as a class. It introduces students to a completely different way of life, while still allowing students to relate to the topic at hand. This book would be good for students in 3-6 grade. Other teaching idea's would be to have the students create a creative response or have a group discussion about the book.White, R. (2008). Little Audrey. New York, NY: Farrar Straus Giroux.

  • Int'l librarian
    2019-05-13 02:28

    I thought for certain after reading the prologue that this would be a great book. Ruth White is a great author, and this is her fictionalized memoir of her family’s hard life in an Appalachia coal mining company town. The story’s good, but not as sad or heartwarming as I thought it might be. White sets the story in 1948, with her sixth-grade sister Audrey as narrator. That gives her the opportunity to have some fun with her own childhood. Ruth is the baby of the family, a six-year-old dervish who can’t always be bothered to put her clothes on before she bolts out the door. She’s my family favorite. I like Audrey too. She’s old enough to know just how little their script can buy at the company store, and she already has hopes to escape. She also knows how angry their dad, John Ed, can be. He spends a good chunk of his salary on liquor. By the time he’s done, there’s not enough left for food for the week. My problem with this is that I’m not sure myself how mean John Ed can be. Audrey says he beats her mom, and he’s fearsome enough to make eight-year-old Yvonne hide under the bed. But there isn’t much evidence beyond a bit of shouting. John Ed isn’t downtrodden enough to sympathize with. And he’s not mean enough to inspire the kind of revulsion that would give the story more energy. I also wish there was more sense of scene. It’s reasonable to accept that Audrey can’t say much about the work in the mines. But she doesn’t have much to say about the natural features of the land either. Her vision doesn’t extend much beyond the road that leads from the general store to school and her home. Then again, it wouldn’t make much sense for Audrey to idealize her life.

  • Brandy
    2019-05-09 06:17

    Author Ruth White grew up in Virginia, and uses her family's years in the coal mining camp as the setting for her fictionalized memoir. Told from her older sister Audrey's perspective, White details her family's struggles with poverty and an alcoholic father with a violent temper. The time spent in Jewell Valley was a dark period in the Whites' life, bookended by the death of one child and a second family tragedy later on. In between, Audrey is an awkward 12-year-old, skinny and bespectacled due to a recent bout of scarlet fever, finding her own place while friends drift away and family ... continues to be family.Food plays a prominent role; there are loving descriptions of the big, filling meals that appeared only sporadically on the table, and the author clearly has fond memories of the meals her mother was able to provide for the four sisters. Little Audrey is an unflinching portrait of a 1948 coal mining town, and a hard, though honest, look at a family's struggle to make ends meet. There's not a lot of plot or action--this really is a slice-of-life story, rather than coming-of-age or something more situational--so it'll be a hard sell to middle schoolers, but they'll be lured in by its brevity when the "historical fiction" assignment rolls around. Some of them will even like it.

  • Katie
    2019-05-10 06:16

    Five things you should know about this book:[return][return]1.The Audrey of the title is the author Ruth White’s older sister. The book is told from her point-of-view when she was 11 years old in 1948.[return][return]2.The story takes place in a coal mining camp in Virginia. Audrey lives there with her parents and three sisters. Audrey had four sisters, but baby Betty Gail died when she was only seven months old.[return][return]3.There is no running water in their house. Oftentimes they don’t have enough to eat because their father spends his paycheck on alcohol. It’s not uncommon for him to be gone all weekend on a drinking binge.[return][return]4.From pg. 99: “I think of Daddy walking to work in the rain…Crawling around the dark with his carbide lantern strapped to his helmet. Digging coal out of the bitter black earth all day long…And this great rush of pity nearabout swallows me. Oh, Daddy, I’m so sorry you have to work in that place, in the dark, in the cold. I wisht I could go to you and hug your neck, and tell you how much I love you.”[return][return]5.When I finished this book, I put it down. I thought about it for a little bit. And then I cried for really a long time.

  • Jen
    2019-04-25 22:36

    11-year-old Audrey has a hard life. The oldest of four girls, she lives with her Mommy and Daddy in the coal mining town of Jewell Valley in southwest Virginia in 1948. Her family is poor, living on the scripts her Daddy earns from working in the coal mines. They don’t have a refrigerator, and thanks to her Daddy’s drinking, they often don’t have food. But there is hope in Audrey’s life as well. She has a wonderful new friend Virgil, and loves her teacher. But something will happen that will change Audrey’s life forever. And nothing will ever be the same again. Based on author Ruth White's family, Little Audrey is a fascinating look at a life very different from others, filled with sadness, hope and triumph._________________________________A very short read, I had a difficult time getting in to Little Audrey. I don't normally pick up historical fiction like this, but did since we were reading it for the CLCSC book club. Ultimately, I was glad I did. White give a glipse into a very different world that one that I think many people know today, illustrating just what it was like to be poor in a coal mining town. And the ending made it all worthwhile for me, as I think that last chapter was just so beautiful.

  • Terri
    2019-05-11 01:20

    This book was chosen as "Booklist's" Editor's Choice for the Young Adult book of the year. I wanted to finish it before tomorrow's announcement of the book awards! It is recommended for grades 5-8, which I think is an apt recommendation. It is largely autobiographical, told by Ruth White through the eyes of her older sister, Audrey. The story is told simply, with great clarity - it reads fast - it took me less than two hours. The story is, in a sense, not new - kind of a "Coal Miner's Daughter" - a story I have heard before. A large family struggles to survive life in a coal mining town in western Virginia in 1948. The mother is traumatized by the death of a baby from spinal meningitis. The father works and drinks. The children live in fear of him. He takes the scrips he earns at the mine and buys liquor. Through all of this, the author and her sisters endure - and, after this story, go on to make something of themselves. The ending is hopeful. I enjoyed it, and would recommend it, but it is not the best young adult book of the year.

  • Melanie
    2019-05-15 01:24

    Audrey lives with her 3 younger sister and their parents in a coal-mining camp in Virginia in 1948. Their father works in the coal mines but drinks most of his pay. Their mother often has to find a way to make food last. Some days the girls go to bed hungry because Mama is still grieving the death of their baby sister, Betty Gail.Life is not happy for this family. Audry especially struggles as she is the oldest and feels most responsible. Mama does seem to be getting better. She's taken to collecting Daddy's pay from the mine office and getting groceries before Daddy can spend the money on alcohol.Good food can't save this family additional grief. In the wee hours before the sun rises, Audrey is woken up by her aunt. She is informed that there has been an accident and that her father is dead. Sure Daddy used to hit Mama and the girls. But he was still their Daddy. What would they do without him?Audrey's journey through some of life's most difficult moments will tug at reader's heartstrings.

  • Julia Richards
    2019-05-04 00:35

    Audrey is a little girl living in the rural south who is nicknamed “Little Audrey” due to her skinny and lanky stature. Audrey at a young age had scarlet fever which made her loose plenty of weight and part of her eye sight making her a target for bullying in school. What makes this book stand out is its perspective on individuals living in poverty on the coal camps. Coal Camp culture and living conditions are often not taught in schools therefore making this book valuable. With the culture of coal camps in mind, I could use this book to teacher my class on a unit of life on the coal camps, and how the culture on the camps compare to American culture in the area they live in. One weakness I found in this book was it’s slow development in the plot. The book is full of boring insignificant events and takes a while to present a conflict and solution. This book is also ideal for children who have lost a family member, or are being bullied at school as a means of bibliotherapy. White, R. (2008). Little Audrey. New York, NY: Farrar Straus Giroux.

  • Ellen
    2019-05-21 06:20

    Audrey lives with her parents and three little sisters in a coal-mining camp in western Virginia. It is 1948 and life is hard in the camp. Audrey's family has to make do without indoor plumbing, a refrigerator, and quite often food. Only able to buy supplies from the overpriced company store, because they don't have a car, skinny Audrey goes hungry with frequency and is taunted for her slight frame. This is a heart-wrenching story. Audrey and her sisters live in such extreme poverty that the simplest of gestures is remembered. For example, Audrey's teacher gives her a banana and Audrey is so excited that she tries desperately to eat the banana slowly, savoring it since she is nearly starving from hunger. Audrey's mother is a sometimes distant, but a fierce advocate for her children and her strength to keep the family together, coupled with Audrey's own observations about the hard life of the mining-camp, make this an excellent read.

  • Tara Kollman
    2019-05-21 05:15

    This book is about a little girl named Audrey that lives with her family in a poor coal mining community. Their family is very poor and barely has enough money to feed them selves. Earlier in the year Audrey had scarlet fever, which made her really sick and now struggles with being too thin. The doctor continues to tell her to gain 6 more pounds, but there is not enough money after her father takes out his portion for liquor. Her dad is an alcoholic that gets aggressive when he is drunk and even hits her mom. Although there are bad times, there are also good times with her dad. Later in the book, her father goes on an alcohol binge with his friend and gets into a car accident and dies. Even though their relationship was bumpy she will always remember the good things about him and forget the bad.

  • Mackenzie Cannon
    2019-05-02 04:18

    This book was about Audrey, an eleven-year-old girl who is living in Jewell Valley, Virginia. She is recovering from scarlet fever where she became very ill and skinny. Audrey’s mother is recovering from the loss of a baby, and her father is an alcoholic who spends most of his nights out at the bar. The book is told in Audrey’s perspective and talks about the struggles the family goes through and the time of trauma they went through living in a coal camp.An activity that students can do in classrooms could be to describe a time they got sick and who cared for them. Genre: Historical FictionFormat: Chapter BookReading Level: HighTheme/Topic: Family, HistoryGender: AllRace: AllSocioeconomic Status: AllWhite, R. (2008). Little audrey. New York, NY: Farrar Straus Giroux.

  • Samantha Fate
    2019-05-09 05:14

    This is a told though the eyes on Audrey which was the older sister of the author. Most of the story is based on true events that happened in their lives. It is a multicultural book because you can see how some of these people lived in poverty in the late 1940's but for myself it was difficult to relate to. The story in engaging and you can really see the struggles and worries of Audrey in these early years of a young girl's life. You learn how Audrey and her little sisters live in a mining town and they live on what they can. After Audrey got sick when she was younger she had to starts using glasses and has struggled to gain weight especially with how her family lives. Her mother is very distant people she seems to be in her own little world and her father works and seems to have a drinking problem. With an unfortunate end things may be looking up for the family.

  • Janie
    2019-05-08 03:31

    Audrey, oldest daughter of a alcoholic miner who is gone both physically and emotionally all the time, and a mother who suffers from depression has a tough life. Adding to the situation at home is the fact that she's recently recovered from scarlet fever and is teased for her thinness and the glasses she now is forced to wear.This is a very well written book, bringing 1948 Virginia to life. White succeeds in bringing the reader into the historical era and feel like you are there watching Audrey's life unfold as it happens. Jealousy, anger, angst and times of sorrow and joy, it's all in this book without being forced. The strength is that despite of it all I was left with hope for her future. Excellent and a read worth recommending for those who like historical fiction.

  • Karen
    2019-04-25 05:24

    Ruth White's book is a fictionalized account of her early childhood living in a coal camp in Virginia, told through the words of her older sister. It's a short, poignant story which brings to life the incredible hardships that some people endure -- yet triumph over. Best for those who like emotional stories with a strong setting. If you've read any of Ruth White's books (e.g., Belle Prater's Boy) you will understand better where she gets her ideas from once you know more about her own life. Also, anyone who found (The Glass Castle) interesting will like this one too.