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Dicey's Song

(Tillerman Cycle #2)

3.97  ·  Rating details ·  17,340 ratings  ·  718 reviews
Now that the four abandoned Tillerman children are settled in with their grandmother, Dicey finds that their new beginnings require love, trust, humor, and courage.
Paperback, 359 pages
Published July 1st 2003 by Aladdin Paperbacks (first published September 1st 1982)
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Charlotte May I would say so yeah. You need book 1 to understand how the family got to where they are in book 2

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Average rating 3.97  · 
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 ·  17,340 ratings  ·  718 reviews

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Charlotte May
"I have the feeling that I know who I am, only I'm not anymore."

3.5 ⭐️

This was a wonderful second installment to the Tillerman Cycle.
When we last left Dicey, James, Maybeth and Sammy - they were beginning new lives, living on their grandmothers farm.

This novel has more focus on the characters themselves, rather than much plot. Which was quite a change from the adventure driven storyline in book 1. It was nonetheless enjoyable, and I loved following the kids as they learned to adjust to life wi
Jan 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Cara by: Valerie
When I was at the library looking at the spine of this book I noticed how well worn and tattered it was,(a sure sign the book has been checked out many times). I began to scratch the back of my head wondering "Do I really want to read this again and run the risk of ruining my image of the book? " I took the plunge anyways and once I started to read again my doubts faded away. This book ALWAYS makes my heart go all fuzzy.

Dicey's song is the sequel to Homecoming (another great read), but I had r
Jan 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, favorites
My friend assures me that Dicey's Song was on several school suggested reading lists and that she read it in ninth grade. Otherwise (well, that and the shiny Newbery medal on the cover), this would have pushed a book off this year's YA/MG book bracket. It's that good.

This is old-school Newbery. This is brilliant. It's warm and empathetic and difficult and real. It's so good that I don't have the words to properly convey my awe. There's this moment, when Dicey's paper is being read aloud and she
Mar 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Though I eventually devoured every book in this series, this was the first one I read. I loved these books as a kid - I loved that they didn't feel like books for kids at all. They seemed like "real" books - as opposed to, say, Baby Sitters Club. I love what an odd, believable character Dicey is, that she's a tomboy with a mothering instinct who wants to build boats. These books broke my heart again and again (and I did re-read them all several times.) I love the way the entire series is written ...more
Nov 09, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: newbery-medal
3.5 stars I'm getting a strong opinion that I couldn't just hand over a newer/modern Newberry Medal winner book to my kids at their age without prereading it. This could have been a good read, if not for the mention of sex, French kiss, bossom, which I thought were better left out. ...more
Jul 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Independent minded kids
Shelves: strongwomen, yabooks
This is quite possible my favorite book. I read it first as a kid, and didn't realize quite how much I idolized the title character, Dicey. She was strong, independent, and different from those around her without caring much. Reading the book as an adult, I realize that Dicey was the character I most had wanted to be like as a kid.

Also cool--other books in the Tillerman Cycle, namely Come a Stranger and A Solitary Blue, tell the story from the points of view of two of Dicey's friends. There are
Hayley Shaver
Sep 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Holy cow! An almost perfect book, this explores how a girl and her family struggle to belong in a new town and with brand new circumstances. This is a must read.
joyce lynn
Jul 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
now that "Homecoming" got me "stuck" on/in a series, and invested in a couple of characters, i HAD to read this one!

in a way, i'm sorry i did, as it took me down some roads i did NOT need to go down. then again, tho ...

i'm REALLY glad i DID read this. first of all, ya know that saying, "out of the mouth of babes"? well ...

this book falls into that category, sort of. guess you have to change the old adage, tho, to "out of the mouth FOR babes", since the book was originally intended for teens. BU
John Porter
Aug 22, 2008 rated it really liked it
A good book that, I suspect, will be a considered slow moving by at least some of its intended audience. Really, it's a book that adults (re: parents) want their children to like as opposed ton e they actually will like. Some will get it. Hopefully, others will come back and recognize that the pace is intentional, the plot only suffers from comparison to the (sadly more common) hyperunrealistic stories for teenagers in books and on TV, and that being big and loud aren't always prerequisites--or ...more
Jennifer (JenIsNotaBookSnob)
Really excellent. If I would have known how good it was going to be, I would have gone ahead and read the first book before reading this one. I'm just working through the Newbery winners and in the interest of getting the list done sometime soon I decided to skip earlier books in series.

Dicey's Song was a contemporary fiction back in the early 80's when it won the Newbery. If you are looking for pop references though, you will not really find them in this book. At the end of the book, the kids
Jenny Leiva
Dec 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
This second book in the series was easier for me to get involved in more quickly, and the shorter page-length benefited the story. I really enjoyed seeing the Tillerman’s getting acquainted with their new home and seeing how Dicey adjusted to her changing role. They are a fun family to read about.
The Tillerman children struggle to settle into their new home. The first book in this series (Homecoming) was, like most books about children surviving on their own, insular and quietly escapist; their reintegration into normal life doesn't have that indulgent tone--but both books hinge on Dicey's ability to know, love, and benevolently manipulate her family members, and that competency and problem-solving is satisfying. There are some clunky conflicts in the middle third between Dicey and autho ...more
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to JoLee by: Megan
Shelves: audio, middle-grade, 2018
Absolutely as lovely as everyone says.

In Dicey's Song, the Tillerman children are learning to call Chrisfield home. It's a transition that comes with some bumps along the way. I just love the feel of Cynthia Voigt's Tillerman Cycle. The cadence of the writing; the introspection of Dicey. There's a certain nostalgic quality to these books that may be because they remind me of the books I read as a child or it may be that the nostalgia is built in. Perhaps it's both. Cynthia Voigt is so good a
Elsa K
Jan 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 01, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: newbery
Great book, maybe a little too long. The story could have been really pathetic and sorry-for-itself, but it wasn't like that at all. I do want to read the others in the series now--I didn't realize there were so many; I'd only heard of the first three. But WHAT a dreadful cover--looks like it belongs to exactly the kind of book this isn't (the pathetic-and-sorry one). ...more
Jul 19, 2007 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: people stuck on an island without any other reading material, like a train schedule, for instance
Shelves: read-fiction
I really tried to like this book. I forced myself to trudge through each banal page. I cut and ran after 50 of them. I know this book won a Newberry, but I guess it was the 80s and there wasn't a whole lot of quality children's literature to nominate. ...more
Apr 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
This was beautiful, real, and sweet. I haven't cried this much reading a book, ever. ...more
Juli Anna
Jul 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was really blown away by this book. The story is quiet and timeless, and I love to read stories about kids dealing with real hardship, rather than the watered-down "problems" you so often see.

This book's greatest strength is character development. We're dealing with a rather large cast of protagonists here--all four Tillerman children and their grandmother--as well as several significant supporting characters, and they are all beautifully fleshed out. Their motives are diverse and believable,
Audrey Kammerer
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was throughly engaged reading the story of this strong young woman as she learns to hold on, reach out and let go. The author does a wonderful job letting the characters create a unique, working family dynamic. Deeper issues like race and gender are discussed through well developed supporting characters. It’s a quick read, but covers a lot of ground.
Jun 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
More than 4 stars for haunting, beautiful imagery and prose. I also loved the nuanced character development. I’ve decided that everyone needs Gram in their lives! Less than 4 stars for the often slow storyline.
Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I re-read Dicey's Song a few days ago. I've read it a few times and I've always loved it, but I'm struggling to write a review because I find it hard to put into words just WHY it is wonderful. The beauty and humanity of the struggles of all the characters, maybe. Voigt has my favourite author quality -- that mysterious and brilliant ability to capture complicated things with simple writing. This book has so many layers and it is beautiful and enjoyable on every one. ...more
Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The book Dicey's Song was a squeal to the book Homecoming by Cynthia Voigt. In this book it showed a lot of character development between Dicey and her siblings. In my personal opinion the book Dicey's Song didn't have as many drastic evens like it did in Homecoming, but instead it showed the readers a more normal life for the kids. Dicey's song was still very enjoyable to read and so was the Homecoming. ...more
May 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Forced to grow up too soon, Dicey discovers that you can learn some things too fast.
Oct 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great sequel, even better than the first book.
R.K. Cowles
May 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adults
3 3/4 stars
Jul 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
I don't remember when I read this book the first time, but I thought it was a good time to read again. It is just as good this time around. ...more
Mac Daly
When Dicey's mother becomes unable to care for her children, Dicey and her three siblings go to live with their grandmother. Life is not easy for the family as they have little money and now five mouths to feed. This is not The Waltons. Dicey is sullen, a loner and take little joy in anything. It's an interesting picture of a hard life, but not very uplifting. ...more
Vicki McKenna
Nov 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
It’s a sad read, but worth it. This book has been a friend for nearly all the 10 years since I first read it.
Mar 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
So good. There are scenes that are devastatingly sad, but the strength and warmth of this family is uplifting from beginning to end.
Aug 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book had a lot of brave growing up in it, by all the characters.
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Cynthia Voigt is an American author of books for young adults dealing with various topics such as adventure, mystery, racism and child abuse.

Angus and Sadie: the Sequoyah Book Award (given by readers in Oklahoma), 2008
The Katahdin Award, for lifetime achievement, 2003
The Anne V. Zarrow Award, for lifetime achievement, 2003
The Margaret Edwards Award, for a body of work, 1995
Jackaroo: Ratte

Other books in the series

Tillerman Cycle (7 books)
  • Homecoming (Tillerman Cycle, #1)
  • A Solitary Blue (Tillerman Cycle, #3)
  • The Runner (Tillerman Cycle, #4)
  • Come a Stranger (Tillerman Cycle, #5)
  • Sons from Afar (Tillerman Cycle, #6)
  • Seventeen Against the Dealer (Tillerman Cycle, #7)

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Some interesting news for book nerds: According to recent industry research, book sales spiked dramatically in 2020–otherwise a rather...
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“I have the feeling that I know who I am, only I'm not anymore.” 16 likes
“I got to thinking—when it was too late—you have to reach out to people. To your family, too. You can't just let them sit there, you should put your hand out. If they slap it back, well you reach out again if you care enough. If you don't care enough, you forget about them, if you can.” 16 likes
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