I’ve been wanting to read Linda Williams Jackson’s historical middle grade novel, MIDNIGHT WITHOUT A MOON since I first heard about it early in 2017. I had the good fortune of interviewing Linda for my Author Spotlight series in January of that year, and the story has stuck with me ever since.
Which may be why I saved it for so long. (Yep, I was the kid who could make a candy bar last for days if I needed to). I had a feeling it would be rich in character and history as well as beautifully written, and I wanted to be able to dive right into it and read without interruption. I was not disappointed.
It’s Mississippi in the summer of 1955, and Rose Lee Carter can’t wait to move north. For now, she’s living with her sharecropper grandparents on a white man’s cotton plantation. Then, one town over, an African American boy, Emmett Till, is killed for allegedly whistling at a white woman. When Till’s murderers are unjustly acquitted, Rose realizes that the South needs a change and that she should be part of the movement. Linda Jackson’s moving debut seamlessly blends a fictional portrait of an African American family and factual events from a famous trial that provoked change in race relations in the United States.
MIDNIGHT WITHOUT A MOON is a compelling story – told with honesty and grace. Every school should have this book on their shelves.
Wonderful and powerful. A tough, lovely, and real story about a young girl growing up in the Mississippi Delta during the 1950’s and struggling to sort out her place in her family and in the world at large. This is a beautiful book – filled with complex characters, sharp storytelling, and rich history. A must read for kids and adults.
- A brave story well told.
- A compelling and relate-able heroine.
- A complicated family structure lots of kids will relate to.
- An accessible and compelling story about Civil Rights in America.
- A great book to pair with To Kill a Mockingbird.
- Some beautiful examples of literary devices such as metaphor, simile, and alliteration.
- A great Discussion Guide.
MIDNIGHT WITHOUT A MOON and the next book in the series, A SKY FULL OF STARS, are both available now. You can pick up a copy online or at your nearest independent bookseller.