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Judy's Journey (American Regional)

4.25  ·  Rating Details ·  181 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
One of the author's series of regional books for children, this is the story of a fierce-tempered child of a migrant family that journeys from Alabama sharecropper shack in a desperate search for security. Fortunately, Judy has the good sense to learn something from each experience.
Paperback, 212 pages
Published 1978 by Dell Yearling (first published 1947)
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Sep 08, 2013 Judith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
The value of a book is more than the skill and creativity of the writer. It encompasses the value that it is given by its readers. A book has immeasurable value when it gives hope, comfort, and a sense of belonging to children.

I can't review Judy's Journey objectively because of my love for it as a child. Television was new then and I believed that it depicted a real world of perfect homes, fathers who always knew best, three perfect meals a day, and mothers who could hear and wore high heels. F
Aug 03, 2010 Judy rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Middle-grade readers, parents, teachers
Recommended to Judy by: my mom
I missed this one back when I was reading the list for 1947. It is the fourth volume in Lois Lenski's American Regional Series and I read it many times as a child. Being published in the year of my birth and having my name in the title made it special to me.

But this book also had a large effect on my life. Judy is the oldest child of a migrant worker family. They follow the crops, live in a tent and are often hungry. Judy longs to go to school and live in a real house. Near the end of the book
Dec 06, 2014 Melody rated it really liked it
Relentlessly sad, this is the story of another Pa not unlike Pa Ingalls. A Pa who can't catch a break, who starts out a sharecropper and ends up midway through the book on his hands and knees with his eldest daughter, picking potatoes. Judy's fierce and proud and smart, of course. One assumes there will be a happy ending. But the road is long and hard. Not to mention dirty and humiliating. Nicely done.

I just can't warm up to Lenski's illustrations. Never have liked 'em. Never will.
Sep 14, 2016 Zaidee rated it really liked it
A little rough given our current family situation -- but interesting about a former share cropper turned migrant family following the harvest season along the east coast. but funny that they live in a chicken coop at the end which made us all laugh:) Some political correctness editing since written in the '40's:) But a newbery award winning author nonetheless for good writing.
Mandi Ellsworth
This is a story of a very poor migrant family from Alabama that bought a truck and traveled from their home to Florida. From Florida they went up the coast of the eastern states to New Jersey following the crops being harvested. I had no idea there were so many people who lived like that. I realize this book is old, but even as a slice of history, I didn't know about it. The children and I read this and there's a fantastic map in the front that shows what was grown in which state and where it is ...more
Sep 23, 2007 CLM rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrensbooks
I always liked the clothing made out of feed bags.
Sep 04, 2012 ABC rated it it was amazing
Shelves: older-kids
This is not as famous as "Strawberry Girl", but it is a much better book, in my opinion. Its heart is in the right place. It is not mean-spirited like "Strawberry Girl" could sometimes be.

This is about a white family that leaves their "home" (actually owned by the wealthy landowner whom they work for) and set out to make money in order to achieve their dream of owning their own land. They find it difficult to get ahead, although it has a happy ending (although probably very unlikely.)

Nowadays i
Elizabeth S
Nov 26, 2011 Elizabeth S rated it liked it
Shelves: c-juvenile, z-2011
Surprisingly fun, and not surprisingly well done. I've enjoyed Lois Lenski's picture books, and I've enjoyed her illustrations for other middle-grade novels, and now I get to enjoy her own middle-grade book.

This book follows Judy and her family as they travel through various states looking for work to earn enough money to get a little farm of their own. We see how easy it is to slip into the grind of just getting by, and how hard to work out of it. But it is possible. We also see that some famil
Mar 12, 2015 Joanne rated it it was amazing
I got this book for Christmas when I was ten years old. It changed the way I looked at the world. I realized what a struggle life can be for so many people. It has become one of my favourite books. I read it to my own daughter when she was ten.
Nov 16, 2014 Anna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: henry, kindle
I've been reading these on my Kindle, as sadly, most of these are out of print. As an adult, I'm struck by the compassion Lenski shows, giving her subjects such quiet dignity. I hope I can interest Henry in her books.
Mary H
Aug 08, 2016 Mary H rated it it was amazing
I had no idea this was part of a series. Judy's Journey is absolutely a favorite childhood book for me. So much that my copy has just about fallen apart after many rereads. Judy's adventures across America were intriguing to me as a child, when I loved reading historical fiction. I was always fascinated by how different lives were from mine with several decades between us. Here's to me not knowing, for the longest time, how to pronounce jalopy!
Aug 04, 2014 Leah rated it really liked it
A great book about how good we have it! I did not read it to my kids, but still enjoyed it as an adult. Childhood has not always been easy and I loved how Judy had authentic reactions that were not always perfect to her circumstances.
Apr 01, 2008 Clara rated it really liked it
Shelves: re-read
Lunch-time read-aloud. I enjoyed re-reading this book, especially because in spite of all of the hard times that Judy's family faces, it ends happily!
Jan 08, 2013 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
I really liked this book, I've always loved Lois Lenski's books, Indian Captive was always one of my favorites!
Sep 14, 2007 Wendy rated it it was amazing
My favorite Lois Lenski book. It still breaks my heart, and I've gotten something new from it in every reread.
Sep 24, 2012 Cindy rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
I discovered Lois Lenski as a child in the new Beech Grove Indiana library and loved them all!
Jan 15, 2012 Karen rated it really liked it
It is so good to read a Lenski I hadn't read before.
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Many of Lenski's books can be collated into 'series' - but since they don't have to be read in order, you may be better off just looking for more information here:

Probably her most famous set is the following:
American Regional Series

Beginning with Bayou Suzette in 1943, Lois Lenski began writing a series of books whic
More about Lois Lenski...

Other Books in the Series

American Regional (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • Bayou Suzette
  • Strawberry Girl
  • Blue Ridge Billy
  • Boom Town Boy
  • Cotton In My Sack
  • Texas Tomboy
  • Prairie School
  • Corn Farm Boy
  • San Francisco Boy
  • Flood Friday

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