Loretta Ellsworth author
Loretta Ellsworth

in search of mockingbird

In Search of Mockingbird

Henry Holt Books for Young Readers
2007; ages 12 and up
ISBN 978-0-8050-7236-5

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A runaway seeks Harper Lee for answers.

Sometimes the things that need to be discovered aren’t so easily found at home. Erin is certain that this is true in her case. A book is all that connects Erin to her mother, who died when she was a baby. But how much can Erin really learn about her mother from a tattered copy of To Kill a Mockingbird?

On the eve of her sixteenth birthday, Erin decides it’s finally time to find out. And so begins her bus journey from Minnesota to Alabama in search of Harper Lee, the reclusive author of Mockingbird.

In a novel full of quirky characters, strange coincidences, and on-the-road adventures, Loretta Ellsworth deftly traces a unique voyage of self-discovery.

resources

honors and recognition

TAYSHAS Reading List, Texas Library Association, 2008-2009
Teen’s Top Ten nomination
Best Books for Young Adults nomination
Cybil Award nomination
IRA Notable Book in Young Adult Fiction, 2008
Midwest Connections Spring/Summer Pick
Midwest Bookseller’s Choice Honor Award in Children’s Literature, 2007
New York Library’s List for the Teenage
Notable Book in Language Arts, 2008
Book-of-the-Month Club Selection

reviews

“A familiar theme, but this little book’s quiet freshness, humor, and affection for Erin and her bus companions make it special and memorable. A great book club choice for thoughtful young readers and aspiring young writers.” (Ellen Scott, The Bookworm, Omaha, NE)

“A remarkable read, featuring some of the best and crispest dialogue I have encountered in a long time. This is a book for all ages not just the young adult market. Anyone who has read To Kill a Mockingbird will consider this book a gift to be treasured. Loretta Ellsworth has told a story that resonates wisdom in its simplicity. I didn’t want it to end.” (Marge Grutzmacher, Pasttimes Books, Sister Bay, WI)

“In a lot of ways In Search of Mockingbird seems to be a novel about mothers and daughters, but I think the twist that Ellsworth has given her readers about the significance of the right book at the right time in anyone’s life should not be overlooked. Erin connects with her mother most completely through the pages of the book they both love and the author they both admire. Basically, To Kill a Mockingbird is the bridge to her mother and by expressing this so well with Erin’s story, Ellsworth’s example will send many of her readers off on the search of titles that will apply to their own lives as well. The best sort of discovery for all of them would be Harper Lee’s book itself—a classic well deserving of the attention that the talented Ellsworth has given it.” (Colleen Mondor, ChasingRay.com)