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Growin Up White

4.45  ·  Rating details ·  71 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Published December 19th 2014 (first published November 30th 2014)
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Jan 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Rating: 4.5 stars
Original review:

Growin' Up White is the story of the Stoner family, told from the perspective of middle child Rick Stoner. Set during the start and peak of the American civil rights movement in Indianapolis, the story revolves around Rick's coming-of-age—making friends, experiencing first love, and looking racism in the face—in a mostly black neighborhood. Much of his (and his family's) growth is ushered along by their highly religious, A
Simply put--one of the very best books I have ever read...really! I love each of the people in Rick's family, black and white. Ritter's writing is not just heartwarming or poignant, it is virtually indescribable by mere words alone. He pulls the reader into Rick's world in the 1950's racist Indianapolis and wrenches every emotion from your soul. I felt as if my heart had been pulled out of my chest at the very end. I guess Mike got what he wanted in the end regarding Arkie, but none of it should ...more
Dec 03, 2015 rated it liked it
This was an edge of your seat book.....taking place around the 1950s it is about the friendship of the doctor's son, their black housekeeper and the son's friends in her black neighborhood... racial tensions were high.. and I can't help but think many of these same attitudes and circumstances still exist today. from the way it smacks you in the face with the first plot description to an unexpected ending - throw in Crispus Attucks winning a state basketball championship - lots of action..the ent ...more
Sharon Anderson PhD
Dec 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Growing up White is a coming-of-age book about inter-racial friendship in the 1950’s when racial segregation and prejudice were strong. Based on a true story, this is certainly worth a read. Many of us grew up during those times and will remember our own lives and how we dealt with racial prejudices. Through those times, did we remain true to our own selves? Did we remain friends with others regardless of their skin color or their ethnic background or were we swayed by the biases and racism of ...more
Francine Abbott
Nov 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As a women of color, this book was extremely heartfelt. It took me back to my childhood at a time when friendships were built on trust and loyalty, in spite of race. When love, trust and God played a role in the lives of Family and Friendships. Francine Abbott
Mary Bennett
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
I recently read this for one of the book groups I am in.  The author grew up in Indianapolis and discussed this book last fall at the library where I work in Carmel.  He is a white man who grew up in a black neighborhood in Indianapolis during the fifties, and this book was the result of his experiences growing up during a racially charged time.  The book is told through Ricky Stoner's eyes as he grows up.  His dad is a doctor who treats many in the black community and his mom is a prodigy class ...more
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book reads like a memoir told by Rick, the son of a white doctor growing up in the 1950s during the civil rights era. Georgey, the family's black housekeeper, takes Rick to her neighborhood where he makes friends with the children there. As a result, Rick lives in two worlds, the white, racist world of his high school and the black neighborhood where his best friend lives. We see through his eyes the difference in the two cultures and the behind the scenes fight to bring them together in eq ...more
Dec 26, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathy Peterson
May 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This account of black/white relationships in Indianapolis in the 1950s feels heartfelt and true. Humor and tragedy intertwined, innocence and gradual unveiling of racism. Courage of the people who built bridges despite opposition. Entertaining and easy to read but full of deeper truth.
Susan Obryan
Feb 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Powerful and entertaining don't do justice to "Growin' Up White," an intense novel that reads almost like a biography, focusing on about a group of kids just trying to find themselves in a racially charged era. It is a tale of relationships and how one choices to react positively in the face of negativity.

The novel is narrated by Ricky Stoner, a white boy who discovers friendship isn't bound by color. His dad is a doctor who treats anyone ailing, and his mom is a classical pianist who opens her
Kay Murphy
Feb 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautifull story set in 1950s segregated Indianapolis. It's a memoir of a fictional white boy, Ricky, whose famiily is interlaced with the black community because hiss father, a town doctor, treats all patients regardless of race, and the family's tie to Georgey, a maid who's really an adopted, respected family memberr. '

I was totally engrossed in this story, finishing it in two sittings. It was very difficult to put down. Ricky is about ten years older than I am, so I recall many of t
Tom Farris
May 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Growing Up White. I felt like I was walking right next to Dwight throughout the book. His writing style makes your mind think you are watching the story live.
I was raised in South Bend in the 60's and 70's but have lived in Indianapolis most of my adult life. Color didn't matter in making friends where I grew up. What mattered most was true friendship, honesty and just being a good person. There are a lot of good lessons about true friendship here that still apply in
Aug 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Dwight Ritter has wrote a great book of the 1950s and 60s. It comes alive through its characters in the book.

Back in the day friendships were based on trust and loyalty, not color. There were some who didn't like mixing with those of color or were just a bit different.

This book is set in 1950s Indianapolis and brings the readers right in the era with the book.

It made me think back to those times I grew up in. I held no prejudices against anyone. We all played together no matter the color of the
Jul 13, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya, adult
Although fiction, much of this book is true. Set in the 1950s, it is a timely reminder that racial hatred, while less overt and perhaps more insidious now, is deeply ingrained in our society.

The book is light on dramatic tension at the beginning, but ends in a startling way. I feel that change mirrors the maturing of Ricky, the main character. Racial hatred was primarily an issue for adults, but as Ricky grows older it has a more significant impact on him.

As a teacher, I recommend for grades 7
Aug 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Saw the author speak at the 2016 Newburyport Literary Festival and chose this book for my choice for book club. It is not too often that all seven members speak highly of the same book. A well written memoir of the author's unusual childhood in Indianapolis in the late 50's, early 60's and his family's relationship with the Black community. His father was a white doctor with a Black patient base. Humor, pathos, and true connections of deep friendship.
Barbara Klipper
Jun 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
One of the best things I've read recently. A coming-of-age story set in Indianapolis in the 1950's, which takes on the issue of racial tensions during the early civil rights period. If you're looking for lots of action and a plot-driven narrative, this isn't the book for you. But if you want a thoughtful novel with memorable characters that deals with some serious topics, you're in for a treat if you read Growin' Up White.
Jane Lincoln
Feb 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This novel is a strong blend of humor and poignancy - as Rickey navigates the world between white and colored. It spans his years from innocence to early adulthood - the dilemmas and choices - learning to navigate what is right and wrong - and what it is to love another human being. It is truly a delight to read, but also an astounding view of racism - a book to be read more than once. Bravo.
Kelsey Buckley
Interesting read about what life and the Civil Rights movement was like in 1950s and 1960s Indianapolis.
Linda Supe
This book is a definite good read, whether you are younger or older, it is inspiring about what friendship should be about.
Jan 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
I truly enjoyed this book
Sep 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Setting- Indianapolis in the early 1950's, and the people in Indy were not ready for integration.
Mar 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was a very satisfying book made even better that it is set in 1950's Indianapolis.
Linda Wilcox
rated it it was amazing
Jul 30, 2015
rated it liked it
Sep 23, 2017
Markitha Brown
rated it it was amazing
Nov 21, 2014
Natalie Perez
rated it really liked it
Oct 30, 2017
Karen Schneider
rated it it was amazing
Jul 06, 2016
Jane Fuqua
rated it it was amazing
Aug 02, 2016
Janet Moore
rated it it was amazing
Aug 06, 2016
Kathleen Swayze
rated it it was amazing
Apr 11, 2018
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Growin' Up White 2 6 Apr 20, 2015 01:28PM  
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