“Out of the Dust” by Karen Hesse

I sought out Karen Hesse’s Newbery Award winning Out of the Dust after reading Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath. Both are tragic stories about families from Oklahoma’s dust bowl during the Great Depression; that’s about where the similarities end. Out of the Dust is a short, spare novel in free verse, narrated by 14yo Billie Jo Kelby. More details might spoil the reading experience for others. Sad but redemptive, it’s a beautifully written historical novel.

3 Responses to ““Out of the Dust” by Karen Hesse”

  1. BookMoot Says:

    Another one I have not read yet. My record for reading Newbery winners is terrible.

  2. Framed Says:

    I just mooched this book. It looked perfect for my Oklahoma book. (I’m trying to read a book from each of the 50 states and OK was a hard one to find) Your review makes me want to get right to it, but I have so many others before it.

  3. girldetective Says:

    To encourage you, it is a very fast read because of the free verse, in spite of the sometimes dark subject matter. Unlike Grapes of Wrath, this took me just a couple hours over a day or two.