Deza Malone is a sixth grader, living with her family in Gary, Indiana at the height of the Great Depression. Deza's father, who she adores, is unable to find work, and eventually leaves the family and heads for Flint, Michigan, where he believes that jobs will be more plentiful. He promises he will write and send for the family, but when Deza, Jimmy, and their mom don't hear for him for several months, they decide to hit the road to try to find him. They end up in a homeless camp outside of Flint.
There's lots to love about this book. Historical fiction is one of my favorite genre, and this book is terrific. It's rich with details from that time period-- e.g. Deza's family doesn't have money to send her to the dentist, so she holds cotton with camphor in her mouth to dull the pain. I love the character of Deza-- she's smart, and spunky, and tough, and resourceful. Just the kind of gal I would want for a friend!
A terrific read. I didn't want to put it down!