Whistling Past the Graveyard

Crandall, Susan

Large Print - 2013
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Whistling Past the Graveyard
In the summer of 1963, nine-year-old spitfire Starla Claudelle runs away from her strict grandmother's Mississippi home. Afraid Mamie will make good on her threat to send her to reform school, Starla starts walking to Nashville to find her momma, who went there when Starla was three. Out in the country, she accepts a ride from a black woman traveling with a white baby. And the trio embarks on a road trip that will change Starla's life forever.

Publisher: Waterville, Maine :, Wheeler Publishing, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning,, 2013
Edition: Large print edition
ISBN: 9781410464118
Branch Call Number: LGE-TYPE FICTION CRANDALL 2013
Characteristics: 507 pages (large print) ;,23 cm


From Library Staff

Determined to get to Nashville to find her mother in 1963, nine-year-old spitfire Starla Claudelle runs away from her strict grandmother's Mississippi home, eventually accepting a ride from a Eula, a black woman traveling alone with a white baby.

Fleeing her strict grandmother's home in 1963 Mississippi, 9-year-old Starla Claudelle becomes an unlikely companion to an African-American woman at whose side she learns harsh lessons about period segregation and family. Also available in downloadable audio book.

From the critics

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Jan 09, 2015
  • barbara1942 rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Good book!

Sep 03, 2014
  • rdw39 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This was a surprising book and a very delightful one. Starla is a very determined young girl, & the author does a wonderful job of bringing out her character & making the reader enjoy her adventures. I could easily recommend this book to all my reading friends.

Jun 23, 2014
  • squirrelee rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

A great summer read! I loved it!!

Oct 04, 2013
  • Bearwomyn rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

One of my top ten reads this year. This is a brilliant book. While it is a good story, an engaging quick read, the social implications/revelations/abominations are graceful, critical and "hearable", in my view, because they come from the thoughts of a child. Down south, a young white girl - Starla, bright, spirited and precocious is bone-tired of her domineering grandmother, of whose care she is in. She runs away...without really planning to, or thinking it through. She just begins to walk. Along the road she meets a middle aged black woman who takes her in, along with the other white child, a baby, that she, well, sorta 'stole.' Together they take an journey through the deep south during the times of white-water-fountains, lunch-counter-sit-ins, blacks-to-the-back-of-the-bus experiences. Our young lady learns how dangerous skin color can be, the absurdities, the realities. We listen to her mind tangled with questions, outrages, confusion...very much thoughts I believe many of us adults may have...presented with such wholesome simplicity that it is heart wrenching. We have an absent oil-rig-working-daddy, murder, swamps, shut doors, evil eyes, a baby in a suitcase...a grand ol' oprey mama, worn shoes, high fevers, cold nights under the stars, fear, love and wonder. Our girl is courageous. She made me proud. She squeezed my heart. My man and I both read this book and we both were moved to tears in the end pages, a rarity for both of us. Beautifully done. Well well worth it. Will be thinking about this book for a long long time.

_ "My daddy says that when you do somethin' to distract you from your worstest fears, it's like whistlin' past the graveyard. You know, making a racket to keep the scaredness and the ghosts away. He says that's how we get by sometimes."

Sep 26, 2013
  • becker rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

This was a nice coming of age story with a likeable sassy little nine year old as the protaganist. It will appeal to those you who enjoy southern fiction or a nice clean story. My only complaint is that I found it lacking in depth but it was an easy entertaining book for those that like a lighter read.

Sep 11, 2013
  • MEDINASTORYTIME rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.



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