A Long Way from Chicago: A boy recounts his annual summer trips to rural Illinois with his sister during the Great Depression to visit their larger-than-life grandmother.
A Long Way from Chicago
What happens when Joey and his sister, Mary Alice—two city slickers from Chicago—make their annual summer visits to Grandma Dowdel’s seemingly sleepy Illinois town?
August 1929: They see their first corpse, and he isn’t resting easy.
August 1930: The Cowgill boys terrorize the town, and Grandma fights back.
August 1931: Joey and Mary Alice help Grandma trespass, poach, catch the sheriff in his underwear, and feed the hungry—all in one day.
And there’s more, as Joey and Mary Alice make seven summer trips to Grandma’s—each one funnier than the year before—in self-contained chapters that readers can enjoy as short stories or take together for a rip-roaringly good novel.
At its core, this is a coming of age story that takes place over nine summers between 1929-1943. Each year, Joey and his sister Mary Alice are sent away from Al Capone’s unsafe Chicago to spend a week in the Illinois countryside with their grandmother – who isn’t exactly what you might expect.
Buckle up because this Newberry book might not be what you expect either.
Over many summers, Joey and his sister experience a variety of misadventures with their tough-skinned, no-nonsense grandmother who does not suffer fools gladly. But along the way, they just might discover that beneath her tough exterior and unconventional choices is a heart of gold.
This book drops you straight into an era quite unlike what we know today. Every chapter takes you somewhere new as the story spans the Great Depression to World War II. If you enjoy this one, don’t miss the sequels!
Recommended Age: 8+