It is 1934, and the Depression is making life tough for Wanda Malinski's family. Her father has been laid off from his job at the mill, so the family must rely on her older sister's meager earnings to make ends meet. There is no money for new shoes, and it's cabbage soup for dinner every night. Mr. Malinski is ashamed and frustrated by his powerlessness, and takes it out on Wanda's big brother, Walter. Wanda sees that Walter is desperate to make his father proud, even if it means leaving home to join President Roosevelt's Civilian Conservation Corps. But he never gets the chance. Direct, understated writing and beautifully rendered pencil drawings capture the high emotional density of an immigrant family's experience as tragedy gives way to hope, and the Polish immigrant community bands together to mend a family's broken heart.
About Helen Recorvits
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Published March 1, 1999
by Farrar Straus Giroux.
Children's Books, Literature & Fiction.