Publisher's Note:  

"We are a family on a journey to a place called wonderful" is the motto of Deza Malone's family. Deza is the smartest girl in her class in Gary, Indiana, singled out by teachers for a special path in life. But the Great Depression hit Gary hard, and there are no jobs for black men. When her beloved father leaves to find work, Deza, Mother, and her older brother Jimmie go in search of him, and end up in a Hooverville outside Flint, Michigan. Jimmie's beautiful voice inspires him to leave the camp to be a performer, while Deza and Mother find a new home, and cling to the hope that they will find Father. The twists and turns of their story reveal the devastation of the Depression and prove that Deza truly is the Mighty Miss Malone.

This book was sent to Compass Book Ratings for review by Random House

The Mighty Miss Malone

by Christopher Paul Curtis

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Overall Review:  

I was captivated by Deza Malone's spunky, spirited voice from the first page. I enjoyed getting to know Deza and her wonderful family, and found her sass (and her creative use of words!) endearing. While at times the book, which deals heavily with some difficult things, can be an emotionally hard book to read, I'm glad to have had the chance to spend some time with "the mighty Miss Malone."

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language: 5 religious exclamations.


Violence/Gore: A boy is said to get in a lot of fights. Girl imagines hurting people (on two occasions). A boy plots ridiculous ways to murder his enemies. A boy is bloody and hurt after a fight. A boy and girl fistfight. Two men die in an accident. Verbal threats are made on two occasions. A boy threatens a man with a razor blade on two occasions (both scenes are brief). A group of men who are mentally unstable fight with the intent to kill each other. A girl punches a man. Shots are fired into the air. A group of armed men ransack a camp.


Sex/Nudity: A girl has a crush on a boy. A little boy tries to kiss a preteen girl. 

Mature Subject Matter:  

The Depression, poverty, racial prejudice and bigotry, joblessness.

Alcohol / Drug Use:  

A boy pretends to smoke a pipe. A boy sings in a speakeasy. Adults smoke and drink.

Reviewed By CindyB
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