1. "MaryAnnRodman.com" Selection 1 Selection 2 2. "About Mary Ann"
3. "My Favorite Books" Selection 3 Selection 4 4. "My Day As a Writer"
5. "Advice For Writers" Selection 5 Selection 6 6. "Scrapbook"
7. "Mary Ann's Books" Selection 7 Selection 8   8. "Mary Ann in Person
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(Farrar Straus & Giroux, April 2004)

Mississippi and integration in the 1960s

The year is 1964, and Alice Ann Moxley's FBI-agent father has been reassigned from Chicago to Jackson, Mississippi, to protect black people who are registering to vote. Alice finds herself thrust into the midst of the racial turmoil that dominates current events, especially when a Negro girl named Valerie Taylor joins her sixth-grade class -- the first of two black students at her new school because of a mandatory integration law. When Alice finds it difficult to penetrate the clique of girls at school she calls the Cheerleaders (they call her Yankee Girl), she figures Valerie, being the other outsider, will be easier to make friends with. But Valerie isn't looking for friends. Rather, Valerie silently endures harassment from the Cheerleaders, much worse than what Alice is put through. Soon Alice realizes the only way to befriend the girls is to seem like a co-conspirator in their plans to make Valerie miserable. It takes a horrible tragedy for her to realize the complete ramifications of following the crowd instead of her heart.

An unflinching story about racism and culture clash in the 1960s.



















(Viking, 2005)

It's summertime at the neighborhood pool, and Lily has her best friend picked out: Tamika. But Tamika already has a best friend and doesn't care about Lily. No matter how hard Lily tries to impress TamikaŚfrom getting Mama to buy her a new bathing suit to having Daddy help her practice her diveŚnothing works.

Told in Lily's honest first-person voice and paired with beautiful water color illustrations by E. B. Lewis, this charming story will help kids learn about what a true friend really is.

(Peachtree, September 2006)

Haley and her friend Ryan have been looking forward to the start of school. But first grade is not at all what Haley expected.

No share time? No fancy classroom decorations? No chocolate ice cream? Even story time, Haley's favorite part of the day, is a huge disappointment. Why does her new teacher stop reading right in the middle of the story?

The rest of the day isn't much better. What's wrong with painting an orange sky? Haley wonders. And, most importantly, when is recess?

Narrated by a very independent-minded little girl, is certain to ring a bell with kids who are facing the challenges of a new experience. Readers of all ages will root for Haley as she discovers that being a first grader is very special after that.

@2006 Mary Ann Rodman