Summer 2004 Review:
This story is told through the
eyes of sixteen year old Hiram Hillburn.
When Hiram goes back to Greenwood, Mississippi to visit his grandfather, he
begins to see the Delta with new eyes. This is not his beloved childhood home.
Over the course of his visit, he begins to understand why his father hates the
South. Desegregation is shunned and the truth about Greenwood becomes all too
clear when a young African-American boy is kidnapped, tortured and murdered.
When Hiram is asked to testify in court, he must make a decision--choose what is
easy or choose what is right.
The characters in this book have depth and are very interesting to read about.
The relationships between the characters were just complex enough. The book
gives a realistic perspective of the feelings of Hiram, the citizens of
Greenwood, and Emmett Till, the boy that was murdered.
When I was reading the book, I had a taste of the racial tension of the 1950's.
I got a personal look at the complexities of the decision that Hiram had to
From reading this book, you can begin to understand the intensity of
segregation, especially in the South.
This is a truly wonderful book and I highly recommend it. I think that middle
school-aged people would enjoy this book the most.
~ Jordyn Grzelewski, 7th grade, the
Montessori School of the Mahoning Valley (MSMV)