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Come Sing, Jimmy Jo


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About the Author

Katherine Paterson was born in China in 1932 - she was the middle of five children. Her parents were missionaries and during her childhood the family travelled extensively. After graduating she was a teacher in Virginia and later she travelled to Japan where she lived for four years. She currently lives in Vermont, USA, with her husband John. The Patersons have four grown children, two of whom are adopted. She loves to teach, read and cook. Katherine Paterson is twice winner of the Newberry Medal- in 1978 for Bridge to Terabithia and in 1981 for Jacob I have Loved.


Gr 5-8-James Johnson has been raised in West Virginia by his Grandma, while his Mother (Olive), Father (Jerry Lee), Grandpa, and Uncle Earl have been out pickin' and singin' country music at tent meetings, picnics, family reunions, etc. Grandma gave her place in the band to Olive when she joined the family. Now 11, James sings only with Grandma. After returning from their most recent trip, the family argues over whether or not to hire a manager. Eddie Switten visits the house and hears James singing. James has "the gift," and it doesn't take Switten long to see that James should play a part in the family's band. They get a six month contract with a TV show, Country Time, in Virginia and move there, leaving Grandma at home. James' name is changed to Jimmy Jo, and Olive becomes Keri Su. Although James becomes the star of the band and has many adoring fans, he is behind in his new school, doesn't have any friends, and doesn't want anyone to know about his singing. It's hard to keep that a secret, since some of the students have seen him on TV and there is a story in the newspaper about him. Linda Stephens narrates the book by Katherine Paterson (Lodestar, 1985) with a variety of southern voices and even sings a bit of the songs. Her narration is clear and distinct. This audio version gives new life to a book that might have lost some popularity over the years.- Rachelle Shollenberger, A.D. Eisenhower Middle School, Norristown, PA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

* "Paterson's talent for storytelling truly shines in this book . . . . It is a gift to its audience, a special gift that should not be passed by."

* "Paterson's talent for storytelling truly shines in this book . . . . It is a gift to its audience, a special gift that should not be passed by."

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