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Blue by Joyce Hostetter

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1 Blue by Joyce Hostetter
This book takes place in 1944 in Hickory, NC. The main characters are Ann-Fay, Bobby, Ida & Ellie, Momma, Daddy, and Junior. Ann-Fay's overalls were made. Ann-Fay's Daddy was going off to fight Hitler in World War II. Her sisters Ida & Ellie are six year old twins. Her brother Bobby is four years old. Franklin D. Roosevelt had polio and was still elected president. Ann-Fay says wisteria blossom’s are purple and her Daddy says there blue…. it’s the only thing they argue about. Ann-Fay has a one-eyed mutt named Pete. Ann-Fay and her Daddy write letters back and forth to each other. There were 12 cases of polio in Catawba County. They turned a summer camp into a polio hospital. Bobby got polio and his legs crumpled right underneath him. Bobby had to be taken to the polio hospital in a hearse. Ann-Fay had to burn all of Bobby’s toys. She had to get rid of the polio germs. The Hinkle sisters would not let Ann-Fay use their telephone because they were afraid of the quarantine. Ann-Fay found their dog Pete while they were leaving the hospital. He had followed Bobby to the hospital. The hearse came back and Bobby was in the back because he died of polio. Junior built a box for Bobby because their mom could not afford one. He used the wood Daddy was going to use to build Pete a doghouse. They sang Amazing Grace at Bobby’s funeral.

2 They buried Bobby under the Mimosa tree.
Bessie laid out a huge meal for Ann-Fay’s family. The meal was so big that you would not even believe there was a war going on. Ann-Fay’s Mom would not do a lot of work because she was so sad about Bobby dying. Ann Fay’s sisters would beg for stories about Bobby. When Ann Fay’s sisters started crying Mom would pull them on her lap and sing “Hush, little baby”. While working in the garden Ann Fay’s sister would say she had come down with a tummy ache to get out of doing work. But Ann-Fay wasn’t taking a chance of her getting polio because of the garden. When the vegetables were done the wisteria would try and sneak across Daddy’s ditch. Wisteria is a purplish-blue vine that for a few weeks in April has beautiful flowers, but every other week is bare as bobbed wire. Daddy had left Ann-Fay in charge of doing his jobs. Wisteria took over everything. Wisteria was pretty for a few weeks each spring but then it seemed like a curse. Ann-Fay suddenly knew why it put daddy in such a blue mood. Ann-Fay had responsibilities that she had not asked for and it seemed like the fun days were gone forever. Ann-Fay let all the pain about her Daddy and Bobby come out against the wisteria. Momma was not worried about Ann-Fay. She had gotten used to Ann-Fay taking care of her.

3 Before Daddy went to the war, every summer he would take the family to visit Mamaw and Papaw Honeycutt in Georgia. Junior drove them halfway to South Carolina. It was illegal for them to cross the state line because of the quarantine. Ann Fay needed someone to watch the girls and give them extra lovin’ after Bobby’s death. To save gas for the trip Junior walked to Peggy Sue’s house to use the phone. Junior loaded the truck with hay bales so there was a hollow space in the middle. They spread a blanket on the floor in the hollow space and Ann-Fay and her sisters sat there. Bessie packed them a snack of cornbread with blackberry jelly and 2 root beers. Ann-Fay made the girls play “I’m going to South Carolina” naming something they would take starting with the letter A and going to the letter Z. While they stopped to pee, a police car came up to Junior. Junior had to leave the girls in the woods so the Police wouldn’t get suspicious. Ann Fay saw the police drive by 4 times before Junior came back to pick them up. Mamaw called Ann-Fay “Susie Q”. The handles of all the tools were made out of Hickory wood. After washing the clothes and eating, Ann-Fay sat down to read Momma the paper.

4 Momma felt Ann-Fay’s head and said she was warm
Momma felt Ann-Fay’s head and said she was warm. Momma thought Ann-Fay had polio and called her “her baby girl”. Momma went to get Junior and Bessie but they were not home. Momma picked Ann-Fay up and put her in the front seat of the truck and drove her to the hospital. She didn’t want her riding in the hearse. Ann-Fay thought God was punishing her for working Bobby till he died when she got polio. When Ann-Fay woke up from a nightmare she saw there was a colored girl in the bed beside her. The colored girls name was Imogene Wilfong. A nurse wrapped Ann-Fay’s legs in Kenny packs. Kenny packs were named after an army nurse named Sister Elizabeth Kenny. Kenny packs are made of wool and they heat the wool and then wrap it around the parts of the body that polio has affected. The heat relaxes your muscles and gets them ready for therapy. As the nurse wrapped Ann-Fay’s legs in the Kenny packs Imogene was whispering “it mostly hurts at first. After a while it starts to feel better”. Ann Fay said the same thing to Imogene when it was her turn for the Kenny pack treatment. Ann-Fay and Imogene became friends. Ann-Fay’s physiotherapists name was Miss Ruth. Imogene was from Greensboro and her dad was in the army just like Ann-Fay. Ann-Fay received a letter from momma and she was back to her old self.

5 Bobby had 2 kinds of polio – Ann-Fay’s kind and the kind that affects the lungs.
Ann-Fay’s dog Pete died right after Bobby died. Imogene said that God collected everyone’s tears in different colored glass bottles. Imogene’s bottle was carnival glass and Ann-Fay’s bottle was blue. When Ann-Fay and Imogene were moved from the contagious ward they were moved to 2 different places because there was a separate ward for the colored. Ann-Fay wrote the editor of the Hickory Daily Record about the whites and coloreds being separated. Ann-Fay and Imogene wrote letters back and forth to each other. Since Ann-Fay was moved her Mom was able to come visit her. Momma let Ann-Fay read a letter that Daddy had written. After Mom left, Ann-Fay wrote a letter to her Daddy and her Daddy wrote back to her. Ann-Fay got a wheelchair for Christmas. Ann-Fay and Imogene wrote letters and decided to meet on a Saturday night around 11:00. Imogene called Ann-Fay “the dishrag” and Imogene was “the mop” because of how wet they were from the rain. Nurse Amanda caught Ann-Fay and Imogene. Ann-Fay got a pair of braces for her legs. Some news reporters came and made a movie about the polio hospital called “The Miracle of Hickory”. Ann-Fay and Imogene were moved to the hospital in Charlotte. Nurse Amanda arranged for Ann-Fay and Imogene to ride in the same car to Charlotte.

6 Some news reporters came and made a movie about the polio hospital called “The Miracle of Hickory”.
Ann-Fay and Imogene were moved to the hospital in Charlotte. Nurse Amanda arranged for Ann-Fay and Imogene to ride in the same car to Charlotte. Ann-Fay found out that Imogene was staying in a tent. Ann-Fay tried to talk her physio Miss Jane into taking her letter to Imogene but she would not do it. On April 12, 1945 President Franklin D Roosevelt died at this polio place in Warm Springs, Georgia. Ann-Fay got Harvey to take the yellow rose that President Roosevelt had given her when he came through Catawba County on a train, and her letters to Imogene. Imogene went home before the war was over. Ann-Fay’s Daddy surprised her by coming to the hospital to take her home. Momma brought Ann-Fay’s blue overalls for her to wear home. Ann-Fay’s Daddy brought her pictures that Bobby had colored so not everything of his was lost and burned.

7 Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary
Leigh writes his first letter to Mr. Henshaw. The first thick chapter book Leigh ever read was Way’s to Amuse a Dog. Leigh has a dog named Bandit. He howls when he hears music. Leigh always puts “Your friend Leigh” at the end of his letter’s. Leigh got an A- on his book report on Ways to Amuse a Dog. Leigh asked Mr. Henshaw 10 questions for Leigh to answer. Leigh’s Mom made him answer the questions and send them back. Leigh lives in a mobile home right outside of Bakersfield. Leigh’s Dad drives a big truck with a cab-over job. Leigh’s Dad and Mom are divorced. Leigh’s Mom works at Catering by Katy. Leigh got to come early to school every morning to help Mr. Friendly raise the flags. Leigh’s Dad got him a quilted down jacket with lot’s of pockets, exactly what he always wanted. Leigh’s Dad phoned him for the first time in a long time from Hermiston, Oregon. Leigh bought a lunchbox alarm for his lunch box so nobody would steal the good stuff out of it. Leigh’s Mom won’t get the TV repaired she says his brain needs to stay in good shape. Leigh’s Dad never called, so Leigh got the pride to call him, then his Dad told Leigh he had lost Bandit in the mountains .

8 Leigh decided to buy a black lunchbox, a light switch, doorbell, a 6 volt battery, and some wires.
A girl in Leigh’s class won the writer’s contest but she couldn’t go to the lunch with the author so she asked Leigh if he would go for her. The author asked Leigh what he wrote for the writer’s competition and he told her the title was “A Day on Dad’s Rig”. Leigh’s story won honorable mention in the yearbook. When Leigh came up to his house his Dad was parked in the front yard and he and Bandit were getting out of the truck. Leigh showed his Dad the story about him and Leigh that had won honorable mention in the yearbook. Leigh’s Dad kept telling Leigh that he was smarter than his Dad. Leigh learned that he could not count on anything his Dad said. Leigh’s Dad let Leigh keep Bandit in the mobile home but Leigh told his Dad that he needed Bandit more than he did. Bandit jumped into the cab of the truck because that was what he wanted to do all along. When Leigh went to bed he laid there and listened to the gas station go ping, ping, ping like it did every night.

9 I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic, 1912
by Lauren Tarshis 10 year old George and his 8 year old sister Phoebe from a little farm in upstate New York, went to their Aunt Daisy’s house in England to spend 2 months with her. George’s mother died 3 years ago. Aunt Daisy was going with Uncle Cliff, who had made his fortune selling automobiles, but he had an accident last year and died, so George and Phoebe were going with her on the ship. Aunt Daisy had taken them to see the Tower of London where they used to chop off your head if the king didn’t like you. George wondered when his papa was going to call him from America, but then he remembered the Titanic was the greatest ship in the world and there was no need to worry.

10 Aunt Daisy was only 22. She called the Titanic a floating palace. They had 3 whole rooms on the Titanic and a steward named Henry who had red hair and an Irish accent who did everything for them. It was one of the biggest suites on the ship. The Titanic had a swimming pool with heated ocean water, 3 dinning rooms, and gold silk curtains. George’s favorite dessert was meringue pudding because it tasted like sugary clouds. George met two people while he was playing marbles and their names were Enzo (4 years old) and Marco. They were heading to New York City on the ship also. “George, We need to make the most of our three days at sea.” Aunt Daisy reminded George, “No trouble or I’ll tell your papa.” George knew that meant he would have to go to army school.

11 George had a habit of finding trouble
George had a habit of finding trouble. He had slid down the banister of the grand staircase and almost knocked down a lady wearing “a hundred pounds of diamonds”. On the first day, he climbed up a huge ladder into the crow’s nest. At school, George had taken a 2 foot rat snake to school because they were studying reptiles Aunt Daisy, George and Phoebe has freckles on their noses. Aunt Daisy always carried lemon drops in a little silver tin. George’s good luck charm was a bowie knife Papa had given him for his 9th birthday with a handle carved from Elk antler. They met Mr. Andrews at dinner, the man who designed the ship. It was 14 stories tall and 45,000 tons of steel with elevators.

12 George heard about a mummy from a tomb near Thebes on the ship
George heard about a mummy from a tomb near Thebes on the ship. It had been sold to the British Museum. People said it was bad luck to take a Mummy from her tomb. That it was a curse. George took his knife because he remembered it had saved him in October when he was chased by a black panther, but no one believed him. George loved the New York Giants baseball team. He was going to find it in first class baggage and instead he found a man with a scar on his face robbing the baggage. The man took George’s knife but he fell when the Titanic hit the iceberg and dropped the knife. George ran back to his room without it.

13 The Summer of the Swans By: Betsy Cromer Byers

14 Characters Sara Godfrey – age 14.
Not having the summer of her life – happy one minute and miserable the next. She feels like a nothing – not cute, not pretty, not smart, not a good dancer, not popular. Thinks her life already peaked when she was 3rd grade milk monitor. Cannot tolerate people who do mean things to Charlie. She feels she has a special bond with Charlie and just “knows” how he’s thinking and feeling.

15 Characters Charlie Godfrey – age 10. Doesn’t talk since he had two high fevered illnesses at age 3 which left him brain damaged, but he will make a loud wailing cry when scared. Spends so much time on the front porch steps shuffling his feet back and forth that he has grooves worn in the wood. Lulls himself to sleep by methodically kicking the wall next to his bed. His prize possession is the watch Wanda gave him for his birthday. People will stop him on the street and ask him the time just so he’ll show them his watch. He holds it to his ear just to hear it tick and he has Aunt Willie wind it every morning after breakfast. A strict routine helps keep him feeling safe and well – same foods, same bed, same school bus seat, same class procedure at school. Unexpected things topple his carefully constructed life and send him into a panic. He’s been lost a couple of times - which terrified him - so he’s been told to never leave the yard by himself.

16 Characters Wanda Godfrey– the older sister. Works at the hospital.
Aunt Willie – 40 year old aunt who is their father’s sister. She has taken care of the 3 children since their mom died 6 years ago. Mary Weicek – Sara’s best friend. Frank – Wanda’s boyfriend. Has a green motor scooter. Calls Wanda “Little One”. Joe Melby – A boy about Sara’s age who she despises because she is sure he stole Charlie’s watch and then returned it to make himself look good. Sam Godfrey –Sara, Wanda, and Charlie’s father and Aunt Willie’s brother. He has black curly hair and a broken front tooth. Works in Ohio and comes home to West Virginia occasionally. Sits and watches t.v. when home and doesn’t really interact with the children like he used to before Charlie’s illness and his wife’s death. Boysie – The family dog, which mostly sleeps.

17 The Summer of the Swans Storyline
It’s summer and the swans have come to the lake. Sara takes Charlie to feed them and he’s so mesmerized that he doesn’t want to leave the lake to go home. Later that night, after staying awake and worrying about a missing button on his pajamas, he thinks he sees one of the swans outside his bedroom window. He leaves the yard to follow it only to find himself lost and terrified. He is discovered missing the next morning at breakfast and Sara guesses he has gone to the lake to see the swans so she heads there to look for him. Aunt Willie calls the police, all the while feeling very guilty about not paying more attention to Charlie the night before when he showed her the missing pajama button. Aunt Willie also calls Sam to tell him Charlie is missing but Sara doesn’t think it will be reason enough for him to come home.

18 The Summer of the Swans Storyline
Sara gets fussed at about being so hard on her dad since he is just trying to support the family as best he can. Sara and Mary start out again looking for Charlie when Joe Melby appears and offers to help. Sara is very rude to him since she is certain he was Charlie’s watch thief, but Mary tells her that Joe is actually the one who got the watch back. Mary leaves the search to get ready to go to a party at Bennie Hoffman’s house. Sara is left searching with Joe, who has found one of Charlie’s bedroom slippers. Sara feels terrible about the things she has said to and about Joe, but she has a hard time with the words, “I’m sorry.” Joe tells her not to worry about it. He says he’s like the coyote in the road runner movies – always getting crushed and dynamited and flattened, but then in the next instant he’s ok again.

19 The Summer of the Swans Storyline
Charlie, meanwhile, has wandered through the briars and over rocks until he’s scratched and very tired. He’s lost, upset, and his watch has quit ticking so he starts crying noisily and kicks and flails until he falls asleep. Struggling to get through the brush and briars while searching for Charlie has made Sara very tired and suddenly she finds herself holding Joe’s hand as he helps her navigate. All the while she’s yelling for Charlie. Charlie wakes up and begins crying out in loud wail because he hears someone calling his name. Sara starts running in the direction of the screams until she finds Charlie. Charlie points to his watch to show Sara it’s not ticking – the stem has fallen out – so Joe puts his watch on Charlie and that seems to help calm him down.

20 The Summer of the Swans Storyline
Aunt Willie and Charlie are re-united and eat watermelon on the neighbor’s front porch. Joe asks Sara to go to Bennie Hoffman’s party with him. Wanda meets Sara on the porch at home asking about what had happened to Charlie – she had heard he was missing on the radio on the way home from work. After having lived through a day filled with all sorts of emotions – fear, fatigue, guilt, anger, helplessness, and then extreme relief, Sara suddenly realizes that maybe this is how her dad feels also. Maybe, she thinks, life is just a series of uneven steps – she is on one step, Charlie is on a flight of smaller, more difficult steps, and her dad is sitting at the bottom of the steps trying very hard not to go down any further.

21 The Titanic hit an iceberg
The Titanic hit an iceberg. People were playing with the pieces of ice like baseballs but George thought they smelled like old sardines. When they have to leave their room with life jackets, they realize that Phoebe is gone. She went out looking for George. Phoebe had left a trail of lemon drop candies like Hansel and Gretel that Aunt Daisy and George followed. The G deck had already been gated off, but Aunt Daisy demanded that they open it and let her down. George met Enzo again and realized that water was up to their ankles and mail was floating in the water from the mailroom. They found Phoebe but the ship catapulted forward and people toppled like dominoes. George had to find a way out because he had looked at the blue prints with Mr. Andrews. He remembered the escape ladders.

22 When they got to the deck, the kids and women got in the life boats
When they got to the deck, the kids and women got in the life boats. Marco had to stay behind, but he sent Enzo with Aunt Daisy. George didn’t make it on the lifeboat because it was full. George fell and hit his head on the deck but Marco saved him. They jumped as far as they could into the water so the ship wouldn’t suck them down. Marco helped George climb onto a door that was floating in the water and George helped Marco onto a crate. George saw a life boat and tried to get Marco onto it but someone pushed his hand off.

23 Suddenly another person helped George up - it was the person that had climbed out of the crate while George was looking for the mummy! He was dressed like a woman (as a disguise) so he could get onto a life boat. The man gave George’s knife back to him and then got on the other boat that everyone got on and George and Marco found their family. George found out that the mummy was really a cat that had died while the man was in Egypt and they had her wrapped like a mummy. George’s Papa met them on the gangplank and Marco stayed with Aunt Daisy until his feet were healed. George thinks that Aunt Daisy and Marco with stay together with Enzo. George and Papa finally talk and decide they are going to build a boat for their pond together.

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