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Someplace to Call Home

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  177 ratings  ·  37 reviews
In 1933, what's left of the Turner family--twelve-year-old Hallie and her two brothers--finds itself driving the back roads of rural America. The children have been swept up into a new migratory way of life. America is facing two devastating crises: the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl. Hundreds of thousands of people in cities across the country have lost jobs. In rural ...more
ebook, 240 pages
Published October 1st 2019 by Sleeping Bear Press (first published August 15th 2019)
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Average rating 3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  177 ratings  ·  37 reviews

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Dee Dee G
Dec 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love books about people helping people during difficult times. This one didn’t disappoint.
This powerful account of life during and after the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl will help readers understand just how traumatic those times were. Twelve-year-old Hallie Turner and her two brothers, sixteen-year-old Tom and Benny, are all that's left of their family, torn about by economic circumstances. All that they own is in their car, and they have spent long periods of time driving around in search of some sort of work just that they can eat. At first things looked promising in ...more
Barb Martin
Oct 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Sandra Dallas offers up another book extolling the hardships of life during the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl. Although this one is written for children, it includes many of the touches familiar to Dallas' readers, including plenty of quilts.

Hallie and her brothers, Tom and Benny, are left to fend for themselves after their father leaves their Oklahoma home to find work, their mother and sister die, and the bank forecloses on the property. They start toward California but stall when their
Nov 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Three children, Tom 17, Hallie 12, and Benny 6, are on their way to California after losing their parents and being dusted out in Oklahoma. They breakdown in a Kansas town and find good people who give them a helping hand.

This book is definitely geared for tweens, but it was a good heartwarming read. The children struggle against town bullies and are judged as squatters but there are funny moments and really great lessons for young people to glean from the story.
Susan P
Jan 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
Since this book was written for grades 3-6, I couldn't expect it to be too deep. It was good history and well-written.
Nov 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Described as a feel good book and she was correct. Just the break I was needing.
Stampinmama Davis
Oct 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-books
I loved the book- I love any Sandra a Dallas book - this one especially since my mother grew up during the depression and dust bowl era.
Nov 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a book for middle schoolers but I think it's a quick and sweet read for anyone. Set during the depression, it is the story of three children, ages sixteen and under, that need to leave their home and travel, looking for work. Faced with people of the different towns not wanting any strangers who can take what little work from the locals, life is extremely difficult. Follow their story once they settle in a place, or at least, hope to.
June Jacobs
Feb 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Sandra Dallas has been one of my favorite historical fiction and non-fiction authors in the adult book market for over two decades. Some of my favorite books by this author include:

The Christmas Quilt, The Bride's House, The Quilt that Walked to Golden: Women and Quilts in the Mountain West from the Overland Trail to Contemporary Colorado, and The Persian Pickle Club.

Naturally, I was delighted to learn that she has been writing middle-grade novels for the past few years, too! When I found a
Ms. Yingling
Public library copy

Hallie, Tom, and Benny Turner have left Oklahoma after the desertion of their father and the death of their sister and mother, and find themselves in Kansas with a broken down car. They are approached by Swede Carlson, who owns the land where they have stopped, and bargain with him to do work on his farm in exchange for being allowed to camp on his land. The Carlsons are doing surprisingly well in 1933, and have a soft spot for the children because their daughter Tessie has
Oct 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Geared toward middle school age, it was written simply yet poignantly and uplifting at the same time. I'm not sure that stories for that age people have to be so simply written, but I suppose it is better safe than sorry. I did think it was very kind of Sandra to include a glossary at the end of the book of some of the "antiquated" terminology she used in the tale, although it was amusing to me to think that kids these days would not know what words like "migrant" mean; some of the words have ...more
Andrew Charles
Feb 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very heartfelt book and I really enjoyed it! It gave me subtle Unsung Hero of Birdsong USA vibes with the time it took place and the “struggling family” topic.

I got very interested in the story and the characters quickly, which is always a great sign. It was a nice touch of historical fiction without war and violence and such.

I really liked the way they balanced a lot of the different stories; Tom working, Hallie going to school, and working with Benny to provide for him. I loved
Melody Kenney
Jan 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I highly recommend this story. The characters, Hallie, Benny, Tom and their neighbors, the Carlsons, are people that kids can cheer for as they face a variety of overwhelming obstacles and overcome them. Many of the themes of bullying, attending a new school, trying to make new friends, hard work, and surviving are things that kids can relate to themselves. I loved how Hallie and Tom cared for and protected Benny, their brother with Down Syndrome.
The writer has handled this historical fiction
Grandma Jake
Nov 06, 2019 rated it liked it
As an adult I call this a "fairy tale book"--"once upon a time"...."and they lived happily ever after". Sometimes as an adult I need that kind of book and young people need to believe (for now anyway) that no matter how tough it gets, everything will get better with a little help from our family and friends. For middle level readers I highly recommend this book. It gives a look at what life was like during the dust bowl in Oklahoma and Kansas. Some readers may think a sixteen year old and a ...more
Barb Butz
Jan 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book captured the essence of hardship during the Dust Bowl /Great Depression years, in a way that kids can grasp and perhaps even imagine or relate to... The three Turner kids modeled strength of character, work ethic, love, and integrity. They persevered through the harsh difficulties they faced in life. In some ways, this book reminded me of an older-kid version of the beloved Boxcar Children, as the resourcefulness of Tom & Hallie was inspiring. The kindness of strangers and ...more
Feb 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Middle Grade
Shelves: middle-grade
Someplace to Call Home reminded me of the Boxcar Children. Set in the dust bowl years, three siblings must find a home, work, and fend for themselves since their mother died and father disappeared. It's not only a story about survival, but the power of kindness and choosing to act with honor. The story accurately portrays the hardships of the era as well as prejudice towards individuals with disabilities. The plot isn't gripping, but the story is heartfelt.
S Hay
Dec 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Sandra Dallas is a talented author, who seems to research the time period and information of the stories she writes and then writes a heart warming book about characters who are likable and good people. This is true with this family, made up of Hallie, her brothers Tom and Benny. Their survival during this period of time, the dust bowl is well written. They were very fortunate. I have read many of Sandra Dallas’s books and they don’t disappoint.
Dec 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a very interesting title to read and I really liked that it had a glossary at the back of the story. I think this one would work great for a class setting that way we could read about the story and then talk about it. I liked the characters and the pacing of the story. I story rounded up really well and didn't leave anything hanging. I think that I will check out more books by this author soon.

Go Into This One Knowing: Great for classrooms
Janilyn Kocher
Oct 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love, love, love. Anything Sandra Dallas writes is top notch. I enjoyed reading this middle grade novel although I am far older than that. It's a heartwarming story about three orphans who settle in a small Kansas town because their car broke down. They make some good friends and although life is still a struggle, they prevail. I love the message of the main characters: integrity, perseverance, and independent. These are traits that used to be valued, but are somewhat scarce today.
Pat Clark
Feb 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book provides a good view of life during the dust bowl years for middle school aged readers. The story chronicles the difficulties of three orphan children who try their hardest to stay together and support themselves. The youngest child has Down Syndrome, so you get a perspective of how a child with this was looked at and treated, both good and bad. The general attitude of people towards displaced people and squatters is also very evident, but it is put into the perspective of the times.
Florence Primrose
Nov 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
Twelve-year old Hallie and her brother, Tom, sixteen, left Oklahoma when the dust storms came. Their parents are gone and they have a six-year-old special brother, Benny. When their car quit they camped by a stream. As they move from place to place they are treated with suspicion and called squatters as they work for food.

Will they find a place to call home?
Jan 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I began this without realizing it was a YA book but continued because it was interesting. A young adult reading this will get a sense of what life was like during the depression and dust bowl. As with anything written by Sandra Dallas, this is well written, easy to read and leaves you with a good feeling about the other people in this world.
Dec 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
A family of 3 children is trying to find a place to live (and work) during the dust bowl era. People call them names and are rude to them until they meet one family who lets them live in their shanty cabin. There at least they have shelter and can barely scrape by on the food they earn or find. Love Sandra Dallas books.
Oct 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
YA novel that deals with many moral issues is a positive way showing the best and worst of human behavior towards others in a world full of troubles and pain. Would recommend for middle school and older.
Nov 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, teen, juvenile
My library cataloged this as adult fiction, so I didn't realize it was actually intended for younger readers. It felt a little like reading an older version of The Boxcar Children. It was a pleasant respite from the usual grim Depression/Dust Bowl fiction.
Dec 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Really liked the portrayal of people coming together to give each other hope.
Jessica Dudenhofer Beery
Jan 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book that tells how people banded together during the hard days of the Great Depression and dust bowl. Another good book by this talented author.
Oct 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Dallas tells a sweet and touching story of three orphaned children forced into a 1930's migratory life as a result of the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl experience.
Jean Cable
Nov 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great young adult read
Pat Morris
Nov 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite amazing historical novel focused on the families fleeing the Oklahoma Dust Bowl and the Depression. A great story of survivor and resiliency.
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Award-winning author SANDRA DALLAS was dubbed “a quintessential American voice” by Jane Smiley, in Vogue Magazine. Sandra’s novels with their themes of loyalty, friendship, and human dignity have been translated into a dozen foreign languages and have been optioned for films.

A journalism graduate of the University of Denver, Sandra began her writing career as a reporter with Business Week. A staff