One summer, Delphine’s dad decides that she and her sisters are old enough to fly all the way across the country to spend time with their mother in Oakland California. Only, here’s the thing, it is 1968, Delphine is eleven, and they are flying alone to see a mother that they barely remember, since she left them when they were babies. And they are going to Oakland, which is STILL a scary neighborhood, but THEN it was a hot bed of racial tension. When the girls arrive in California, do you think their mother is happy to see them?
No! In fact, she doesn’t even show up to get them from the airport, until Delphine calls her and begs. And when she does show up, she demands the money they were saving for Disneyland! Things go downhill from there, when she kicks them out of the house the next morning and tells them not to come back until 6 p.m.. All alone, with no breakfast, since their mother wont even let them LOOK in the kitchen, these three girls end up at a Black Panther summer camp. This group is trying to advocate for greater racial equality, and just recently a young man was shot. Things are tense in the neighborhood, and it might get violent. But Delphine and her sisters are there for the free breakfast and not the revolution.
Do you think they will manage to stay out of the revolution and possible violence? Will they ever discover what is in the kitchen? Read One Crazy Summer, by Rita Williams-Garcia to find out what happens to Delphine and her sisters.
I gave this book talk, or something like it as I didn’t write it out beforehand, to a fourth grade class and a boy dragged his mom to the library to get him a card and tracked me down to ask about the book with the kitchen, cause he wanted to know what was in there.
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