Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 9 - 12Grades 3 - 5n/a4.592597
Mattie Gokey has a word for everything. She collects words, stores them up as a way of fending off the hard truths of her life, the truths that she can't write down in stories.
The fresh pain of her mother's death. The burden of raising her sisters while her father struggles over his brokeback farm. The mad welter of feelings Mattie has for handsome but dull Royal Loomis, who says he wants to marry her. And the secret dreams that keep her going--visions of finishing high school, going to college in New York City, becoming a writer.
Yet when the drowned body of a young woman turns up at the hotel where Mattie works, all her words are useless. But in the dead woman's letters, Mattie again finds her voice, and a determination to live her own life.
Set in 1906 against the backdrop of the murder that inspired Theodore Dreiser's An American Tragedy, this coming-of-age novel effortlessly weaves romance, history, and a murder mystery into something moving, and real, and wholly original.
Paperback, 408 pages
Published on September 1, 2004 by HMH Books for Young Readers
ISBN-10: 0152053107
ISBN-13: 9780152053109
2 Book Reviews
  • mcgregor
    mcgregoralmost 7 years11 star
    it was good
    • mypetsrock
      mypetsrockalmost 10 years
      I love this book so much i read it 5 times and enjoyed it all the 5 times, it is so romantic and a little sad. i would not recommend this book to younger kidsbecause it can get a little to romantic and some of the words are a big no no to kids