SmartSellTM - The New Way to Sell Online

We won't be beaten by anyone. Guaranteed



Product Description
Product Details

About the Author

Gary Paulsen is the distinguished author of many critically acclaimed books for young people, including three Newbery Honor books: The Winter Room, Hatchet, and Dogsong. He won the Margaret A. Edwards Award given by the American Library Association for his lifetime achievement in young adult literature. Among his Random House books are Road Trip (written with his son, Jim Paulsen); Family Ties; Vote; Crush; Flat Broke; Liar, Liar; Paintings from the Cave; Woods Runner; Masters of Disaster; Lawn Boy; Notes from the Dog; The Amazing Life of Birds; Molly McGinty Has a Really Good Day; How Angel Peterson Got His Name; Guts; and five books about Francis Tucket's adventures in the Old West. Gary Paulsen has also published fiction and nonfiction for adults. He divides his time between his home in Alaska, his ranch in New Mexico, and his sailboat on the Pacific Ocean.


Gr 6-9‘Sarny, a child in Paulsen's Nightjohn (Doubleday, 1993), narrates the story of her life from girlhood until 1930, when she is 94 years old. Born into slavery and taught to read by the slave Nightjohn, she marries, bears two babies, and sees her husband worked to death. Her children are sold just as the Civil War ends. Accompanied by another freed slave, Sarny journeys toward New Orleans looking for her children, and meets Miss Laura, a light-skinned black woman with a shadowy occupation and lots of money. In New Orleans, Sarny finds her children and lives comfortably in Miss Laura's employ. She remarries, teaches black children to read, and sees her husband lynched. As the story ends, Sarny, a very rich woman, is living in Texas and waiting to die. Sarny's strong narrative voice is striking, as she remembers events in her own distinct way. It is as though readers are sitting at the feet of a real person, listening as her story spins out. Those unfamiliar with Nightjohn will not understand the numerous references to it, but this detracts little from the story. While Sarny suffers many terrible tragedies, her life after the war is probably far more comfortable and sheltered than the lives of the vast majority of former slaves. However, this is not meant to be a sweeping overview of history, but the highly individualized account of one woman's experiences. Just how much of the book is based on historical facts remains fuzzy, but Sarny is a wonderful, believable character. Her story makes absorbing reading.‘Bruce Anne Shook, Mendenhall Middle School, Greensboro, NC

In this somewhat contrived sequel to Nightjohn, set in post-Civil War New Orleans, 94-year-old Sarny reflects on her first few years as an emancipated slave. On the day the plantation master is killed by a Union soldier, Sarny heads to New Orleans to find her two sold children. A series of unlikely coincidences follows: the wealthy "Miss Laura," who offers Sarny and her friend Lucy a ride, just happens to know the owner of Sarny's children, who arrive at the party she throws upon returning to New Orleans. In the fairy-tale ending, Miss Laura offers Sarny and Lucy refuge and employment in her stately home, then leaves all her money to Sarny when she "passes on." Miss Laura, an "octoroon" who "passes" for white, is an intriguing figure with a shadowy past: "There's some to say later that Miss Laura wasn't a moral person...." Paulsen never clarifies, however, how she makes her money or developed her connections with generals and bankers, although he hints at prostitution. Sarny is a noble character who carries Paulsen's message of the power of literacy (e.g., she can read the auction papers that lead her to her children, and she starts a school to teach others to read). While the story is a page-turner, and may serve middle-grade readers well as an introduction, young adults more familiar with the complexities of America after the Civil War may find that this sugar-coated tale goes down a bit too easily. Ages 12-up. (Oct.)

"A satisfying sequel...It is a great read, with characters both to hate and to cherish, and a rich sense of what it really was like then." --Booklist, Starred

Ask a Question About this Product More...
Write your question below:
Look for similar items by category
How Fishpond Works
Fishpond works with suppliers all over the world to bring you a huge selection of products, really great prices, and delivery included on over 25 million products that we sell. We do our best every day to make Fishpond an awesome place for customers to shop and get what they want — all at the best prices online.
Webmasters, Bloggers & Website Owners
You can earn a 5% commission by selling Sarny: A Life Remembered (Sarny) on your website. It's easy to get started - we will give you example code. After you're set-up, your website can earn you money while you work, play or even sleep! You should start right now!
Authors / Publishers
Are you the Author or Publisher of a book? Or the manufacturer of one of the millions of products that we sell. You can improve sales and grow your revenue by submitting additional information on this title. The better the information we have about a product, the more we will sell!
Item ships from and is sold by, Inc.
Back to top