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All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook
Cover of All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook
All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook
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Junior Library Guild Selection * Kids' Indie Next List PickFrom Leslie Connor, award-winning author of Waiting for Normal and Crunch, comes a soaring and heartfelt story about love, forgiveness, and...
Junior Library Guild Selection * Kids' Indie Next List PickFrom Leslie Connor, award-winning author of Waiting for Normal and Crunch, comes a soaring and heartfelt story about love, forgiveness, and...
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Description-

  • Junior Library Guild Selection * Kids' Indie Next List Pick

    From Leslie Connor, award-winning author of Waiting for Normal and Crunch, comes a soaring and heartfelt story about love, forgiveness, and how innocence makes us all rise up. All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook is a powerful story, perfect for fans of Wonder and When You Reach Me.

    Eleven-year-old Perry was born and raised by his mom at the Blue River Co-ed Correctional Facility in tiny Surprise, Nebraska. His mom is a resident on Cell Block C, and so far Warden Daugherty has made it possible for them to be together. That is, until a new district attorney discovers the truth—and Perry is removed from the facility and forced into a foster home.

    When Perry moves to the "outside" world, he feels trapped. Desperate to be reunited with his mom, Perry goes on a quest for answers about her past crime. As he gets closer to the truth, he will discover that love makes people resilient no matter where they come from . . . but can he find a way to tell everyone what home truly means?

About the Author-

  • Leslie Connor is the author of several award-winning books for children, including two ALA Schneider Family Book Award winners, Waiting for Normal and The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle, which was also selected as a National Book Award finalist. Her other books include All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook, Crunch, and The Things You Kiss Goodbye. She lives in the Connecticut woods with her family and three rescue dogs. You can visit her online at www.leslieconnor.com.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    March 7, 2016
    The only home 11-year-old Perry has ever known is the Blue River Co-ed Correctional Facility in "teeny-tiny" Surprise, Neb., where his mother was incarcerated when he was born. Thanks to a compassionate warden, Perry has been able to stay close to his mother in a room near her cell for years. When the new district attorney—a stickler for rules—finds out about the arrangement, he takes guardianship of Perry, forcing him to come live with his family, much to Perry's dismay. Now Perry is determined to reunite with his mother and ensure that she makes parole, despite the attorney's objections. In a novel filled with endearing characters, sad goodbyes, and new beginnings, Connor (Crunch) expresses the depth of Perry's homesickness without romanticizing his life in a prison. Perry misses many of the inmates, yet he recognizes the seriousness of their crimes and the price they have to pay for their mistakes. The novel's pointed criticism of prisons' restrictions, especially regarding the separation of inmates from their families, could easily prompt discussions about reform and rehabilitation. Ages 8–12. Agent: Miriam Altshuler, Miriam Altshuler Literary Agency.

  • Kirkus

    Starred review from December 15, 2015
    Positive thinking proves powerful for Perry Cook and his incarcerated mother. The Blue River Co-ed Correctional Facility in Surprise, Nebraska, is the only home the sixth-grader has ever known. His official foster parent, the warden of the minimum security facility, has let him stay with his birth mother there for nearly 12 years. When an ambitious district attorney yanks him out and delays Jessica Cook's parole application, Perry has to use his jail-honed skill of focusing on the positive to cope with his new foster placement with the DA's family and to get his mother released. This portrayal of prison life from the inside and from a child's point of view doesn't ignore unhappy realities, but it highlights the good: Jessica's social work, the support of their prison "family," and the love the prisoners have for their "mouse in the house." Similarly, while some have his back at school, including his best friend, Zoey--who's also the DA's stepdaughter--bullies are there, too. Related in short, episodic chapters, the narrative spans the eight weeks Perry spends at the DA's, concentrating in the first person on his experience but occasionally interrupting to look in on Jessica in the third person. Readers even learn some other prisoners' stories. With complex, memorable characters, a situation that demands sympathy, and a story that's shown, not just told, this is fresh and affecting. Well-crafted, warm, and wonderful. (Fiction. 9-13)

    COPYRIGHT(2015) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    Starred review from December 1, 2015

    Gr 5-7-Eleven-year-old Perry's home life is like that of most kids his age: morning ritual, school, dinner with his mom, and games with his extended family. Unlike other kids, however, Perry lives at the Blue River Co-Ed Correctional Facility, where he's stayed since birth with his mother, Jessica. Nearing the end of her sentence, Jessica is up for parole, and she and Perry are eager to start a new life on the outside. Opposing Jessica's parole is the county's ambitious district attorney, Tom VanLeer, stepfather of Perry's best friend. VanLeer is outraged that a child was raised in a prison and demands that Perry live with the VanLeers while the case is sorted out. Perry knows he has traded a prison that feels like home for a home that feels like a prison. He resolves to reunite with his mother and have her appeal granted. Connor subtly conveys Perry's restrained anger over being torn from his Blue River family (for instance, the boy refers to objects in his foster home as "the VanLeer closet" or "a VanLeer towel"). Perry is a memorable protagonist whose unusual upbringing gives him an understanding of and faith in human nature that brings out the best in everyone around him. He's a perfect foil for the superficial morality of VanLeer, who is no match for Perry's integrity when the boy confronts the adult on his duplicity, declaring, "Your word is no good." Rich characterizations give the novel its big heart: Jessica, Big Ed, and the other Blue River inmates are nuanced, vivid characters whose stories of perseverance after tragedy embody the novel's themes of redemption, hope, and community. VERDICT This beautifully written work will send readers' spirits soaring.-Marybeth Kozikowski, Sachem Public Library, Holbrook, NY

    Copyright 2015 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • Kirkus Reviews (starred review) ★ "With complex, memorable characters, a situation that demands sympathy, and a story that's shown, not just told, this is fresh and affecting. Well-crafted, warm, and wonderful."
  • School Library Journal (starred review) ★ "Rich characterizations give the novel its big heart: Jessica, Big Ed, and the other Blue River inmates are nuanced, vivid characters whose stories of perseverance after tragedy embody the novel's themes of redemption, hope, and community. This beautifully written work will send readers' spirits soaring."
  • Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books "Readers will long remember the folks of Blue River after its gates have closed."
  • Publishers Weekly "In a novel filled with endearing characters, sad goodbyes, and new beginnings, Connor (Crunch) expresses the depth of Perry's homesickness without romanticizing his life in a prison."
  • Newbery Honor-winning author Gary D. Schmidt "Every so often, a novel comes along to remind us of that what we hope is true, is true: that understanding is stronger than what seems to be justice, that kindness is deeper and fuller than anger, and that goodness can heal brokenness. This is one of those novels."
  • Lynda Mullaly Hunt, New York Times bestselling author of Fish in a Tree "Perry Cook is a character who steps off the page, wanders through your mind, and finds his way to your heart."
  • Corey Ann Haydu, author of Rules for Stealing Stars "All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook is a book filled with tough truths, relentless optimism, fierce love and above all else gorgeous writing. I loved every heartbreaking, joyful page."
  • Kimberly Newton Fusco, author of Beholding Bee "A heartwarming story with an unstoppable hero, a mystery that keeps you guessing, and a unique setting. All Rise for the Honorable Perry T. Cook is a rich look at family and what it means to face adversity and fly—I loved it."
  • Nora Raleigh Baskin, author of Ruby on the Outside and Anything But Typical "Leslie Connor has given young readers a gentle introduction into the world of incarcerated parents in an engaging and ultimately wonderfully rewarding story."
  • Shoshana, Reading Bug (San Carlos, CA) "I don't think there's been a book so moving and heartwarming for this age range since WONDER."
  • Kirkus Reviews (starred review) on Waiting for Normal Starred Reviews for Waiting for Normal: "A heroine with spunk and spirit offers an inspiring lesson in perseverance and hope. First-rate."
  • School Library Journal (starred review) on Waiting for Normal "A story centered around loss, heartbreak, abandonment, and new beginnings."
  • Publishers Weekly (starred review) on Waiting for Normal "Characters as persuasively optimistic as Addie are rare, and readers will gravitate to her. Poignant."

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    Katherine Tegen Books
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