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Dicey's Song

(Tillerman Cycle #2)

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  16,201 Ratings  ·  649 Reviews
At the beginning of summer, Momma had abandoned them and them later been traced to an asylum where she lay unrecognizing, unknowing. So Dicey Tillerman, her brothers James and Sammy, and her sister Maybeth had spent the summer on their own on a long and difficult journey to find a home with the grandmother they'd never met before. Now that they'd moved in with Gram, their ...more
Audio Cassette, Abridged, 0 pages
Published May 5th 1997 by Listening Library (first published 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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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 wit
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  ·  review of another edition
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  ·  review of another edition
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.
Jul 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Independent minded kids
Shelves: yabooks, strongwomen
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
joyce lynn
Jul 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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  ·  review of another edition
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  ·  review of another edition
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.
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to JoLee by: Megan
Shelves: 2018, audio, middle-grade
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  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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).
Jul 19, 2007 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
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.
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,
R.K. Cowles
May 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adults
3 3/4 stars
Oct 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great sequel, even better than the first book.
May 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Forced to grow up too soon, Dicey discovers that you can learn some things too fast.
Debbie Willms
Sep 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book and wonder why it isn't in my library.
Apr 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This was beautiful, real, and sweet. I haven't cried this much reading a book, ever.
Lars Guthrie
Sep 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like the first in the Tillerman cycle, 'Homecoming,' I revisited 'Dicey's Song' on compact disc. Like 'Homecoming,' that auditory revisiting was perhaps even more gratifying than the completely satisfying initial read. Barbara Caruso is especially impressive as narrator here because the character of Gram is so much more central to the story. Caruso absolutely nails Gram's voice.

You might not have to have read 'Homecoming' to appreciate 'Dicey's Song' but it certainly would help. The first book e
An easier read than the first one, in that I wasn't in constant terror of the kids dying or being put into foster care. I didn't for a moment think that Gram would dump them somewhere, which seemed to be Dicey's main concern. No, I was concerned that Dicey would screw up in every other aspect of her life, making this a pretty uncomfortable read. You hear about characters being prickly, but then there's Dicey . . . who cannot take a compliment, cannot even exchange a greeting with someone, but ha ...more
Mar 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: newbery

I loved this book for its characters and its life lessons.

Thirteen-year-old Dicey Tillerman, her younger brothers James and Sammy, and their younger sister Maybeth have begun to live with Gram after their mother deserted them. Dicey, in an earlier book, bravely led her siblings through several states to appear at their surprised grandmother’s home.

In Dicey’s Song, the Tillermans become a family. Gram must change many of her quirky, insular ways and must open her heart (and some of her past) to
Jan 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This novel called Dicey's Song by Cynthia Voigt is a novel about a thirteen year old girl that lives with her two siblings and her grandmother. She doesn't have a father and unfortunately her mother is placed in a mental hospital. Dicey's life changed a lot because of her mother's illness. She became more responsible for herself and her family. She was also very hardworking and whenever she wanted to accomplish something she always put her mind to it and she's the type of person who would never
Oct 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Without Homecoming, I can see that this book would lose some of its weight. But as a sequel, I found it fantastic and just as compelling. (Perhaps reading the two back to back helped that feeling.) Dicey is a great character, and there are still so many unanswered questions and avenues yet to be explored in her life. I can't wait to read more of the series.

I often find that I'm most excited about a book just after I finish it, and then my excitement cools. We'll see if that happens here. Usuall

Oct 19, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: newbery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 18, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the second in what has become called the Tillerman Series. I would recommend NOT reading these books as a series but as a the same setting from different perspectives.

Again, I connected with the grandmother most, though I enjoyed the overall idea of children being capable and competent. Given the opportunity, kids come up with pretty amazing solutions. They shouldn't have to worry about whether they will eat or where they will sleep, but they should be allowed and encouraged to participa
Erica Cowhick
This is a John Newberry Medel book.
A thirteen-year-old Dicey Tillerman and her three siblings learn how to adjust to a new life on their grandmother's old farm in Maryland. The children seek to find their grandmother after being abandoned in a parking lot by their alcoholic mother. Dicey took on a huge responsibility by acting as a parent for her younger siblings. The children are in a safe environment and Dicey is having difficulty letting go of that role of being a mother. Dicey and her sibli
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Jul 24, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: newbery
I avoided this book for a long time because I had heard it was too upsetting for children. Yes, it is a sad book. And it might be too sad for some children. But there are lots and lots of children who would like to hear this story.

Dicey and her three siblings have come to live with their grandmother. Their mother is in a mental hospital; their father skipped out before Dicey’s youngest brother, Sammy, was born.

There are lots of problems to overcome. Dicey’s sister, Maybeth, isn’t learning like s
Int'l librarian
This is the second volume in the remarkable story of the Tillermans, one of my favorite fictional families. The four children have moved past the improbable circumstances of their mid-Atlantic journey, and are now settled at their Grandma’s Chesapeake Bay home.

This secure foundation invites some strong character development. Gram is a traditional cranky old woman, set in her ways, with a heart of gold underneath all that sandpaper. She may be a stereotype, but her responses are so personal and
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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)
“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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