The Rock And The River
  • The Rock And The River
  • The Rock And The River
  • The Rock And The River
ISBN: 1416978038
EAN13: 9781416978039
Language: English
Release Date: Apr 6, 2010
Pages: 304
Dimensions: 0.87" H x 7.72" L x 5.12" W
Weight: 0.44 lbs.
Format: Paperback
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Format: Paperback

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Book Overview

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Winner of the ALA Coretta Scott King-John Steptoe New Talent Award, The Rock and the River was described in a Booklist starred review as a taut, eloquent first novel that] will make readers feel what it was like to be young, black, and militant.

The Time: 1968
The Place: Chicago

For thirteen-year-old Sam it's not easy being the son of known civil rights activist Roland Childs. Especially when his older (and best friend), Stick, begins to drift away from him for no apparent reason. And then it happens: Sam finds something that changes everything forever.

Sam has always had faith in his father, but when he finds literature about the Black Panthers under Stick's bed, he's not sure who to believe: his father or his best friend. Suddenly, nothing feels certain anymore.

Sam wants to believe that his father is right: You can effect change without using violence. But as time goes on, Sam grows weary of standing by and watching as his friends and family suffer at the hands of racism in their own community. Sam beings to explore the Panthers with Stick, but soon he's involved in something far more serious--and more dangerous--than he could have ever predicted. Sam is faced with a difficult decision. Will he follow his father or his brother? His mind or his heart? The rock or the river?

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Book Reviews (7)

  |   7  reviews
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   Great perspective
I bought this book on a friend's recommendation and was not disappointed. It offers a fresh perspective on a topic often rendered in black and white. I found the rise of the Black Panther movement in Chicago through the conflicted eyes of a teenage boy to be an interesting take and one that really made me feel the emotions involved. It was helpful in understanding the nuanced nature of the racial conflicts of the time period, as well as being a good story that draws you into the characters'lives. I thought it was well written and enjoyed reading the book very much, and looked forward to reading more by this author.
   A breathtakingly poignant debut novel
After reading positive editorial reviews, I decided to purchase The Rock and the River and was rewarded for doing so. To call it a beautiful coming of age story is not simply enough, as it transcends the genre. It is very well written and the prose is deep without overshadowing the humanity of characters. It is one of those novels that will make you think, cry and remember. I was disappointed to learn that this is the first novel by the author.
   This book made my 12 year old son enjoy reading again
Growing up, my son loved to read, but over the years he has gotten into the horrible mindset that reading outside the school is punishment. I'm so happy to report that this book has changed that mindset and he has found his love of reading again. He was so interested in this story that he could hardly put it down and he shared the details of it with several family members.
   Good except for the romance of 13 y/o’s.
While I think the book was good to show a young Pinots perspective of the civil rights movement, I liked to see the similarities and differences between those who fled the peaceful Martin Luther King and the black Panthers.8 I hate that there was a romantic relationship between the main character's 13. I do one great, then they hate it.
   Your middle schooler will eat this up
My 12 year old boy read this book for school, it was assigned for summer reading. The story is relevant to the summer of our discontent and deals with the type of subject matter that is compelling to middle school children.
   This book manages to inform the reader without making it feel like a "teachable moment" sort of thing--not easy to do
Kekla Magoon does a masterful job of presenting the main struggles of adolescence-independence from and attachment to family, self-awareness, peer pressure in the framework of Civil Rights and Black Panther movements, but also from the framework of Famililly. This book manages to inform the reader without making it feel like a teachable moment of nothing-not easy to do and much appreciated.
   Interesting viewpoints of this period in history
I chose to read it because my son has to read a historical fiction novel next month. I like how the author challenged me to think in new ways about this time in history, and from a perspective I did not know. JH-JH