Life in Claire’s typical Midwestern town is quiet; some would even say boring. But this is the 1950s, and things that seem calm on the surface are often churning underneath. When Claire takes a new black friend, dressed as “Liberty,” to the Fourth of July parade in the town park, she realizes there can be no liberty for either girl in her all-white town.
And as she grows older, she discovers that her world is more complicated than she ever imagined. Being the “new girl” in school isn’t the fresh start she was hoping for. Getting a pet involves sacrifices. And falling in love is more confusing than fulfillingespecially when it is not a love that can be spoken of, least of all by Claire.
Teenage sexuality, northern segregation, differing religious beliefs, and animal cruelty are just a few of the controversial topics explored in this collection of five interrelated stories, told in a voice that is both refreshingly naive and darkly humourous. With this book, Marion Dane Bauer lives up to her reputation as a writer who is not afraid to delve into difficult material in search of the truth.
Listen to an Interview with Marion