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The Big Read Events for Teens

Events for Teens

Related Books for Teens

Out of the Dust
Karen Hesse
In a series of poems, fifteen-year-old Billie Jo relates the hardships of living on her family's wheat farm in Oklahoma during the dust bowl years of the Depression.

The Train Jumper
Don Brown
Jumping freight trains during the Great Depression leads fourteen-year-old Collie to a friendship with men and boys on their way to "somewhere else."

Red Palms
Cara Haycak
When fourteen-year-old Benita's wealthy family goes bankrupt as a result of the Depression, they go from their luxurious life in Guayaquil, Ecuador to a primitive island, with the wild scheme of starting a coconut plantation.

The Spirit Catchers: An Encounter With Georgia O'Keeffe
Kathleen Kudlinski
During the Great Depression, fifteen-year-old Parker finds himself homeless and traveling across New Mexico's desert, when a shepherd leads him to the artist Georgia O'Keeffe who teaches him photography and gives him a new perspective on life.

The Castaways
Rob Vollmar and Pablo G. Callejo
The adventures of young Tucker Freeman as he is compelled to hop a train to escape from the crippling poverty of his rural existence. Armed with only fifteen cents and the memory of his occasional hobo father's counsel, Tuck must find his place in this broken America of the Great Depression.

Wish Riders
Patrick Jennings
Forced to work in a logging camp during the Depression, fifteen-year-old Dusty discovers the power of wishes when magical horses, made entirely out of wood and vines, help her--and her friends--navigate through a land of enchantment to freedom.

Dust
Arthur Slade
Eleven-year-old Robert is the only one who can help when a mysterious stranger arrives, performing tricks and promising to bring rain, at the same time children begin to disappear from a dust bowl farm town in Saskatchewan in the 1930s.

Hitch
Jeanette Ingold
To help his family during the Depression and avoid becoming a drunk like his father, Moss Trawnley joins the Civilian Conservation Corps, helps build a new camp near Monroe, Montana, and leads the other men in making the camp a success.

Thursday's Child
Sonya Hartnett
A young woman, looking back on her childhood, recounts her farm family's poverty, her father's cowardice, and her younger brother's obsession for digging tunnels and living underground.

The Barn Burner
Patricia Willis
In 1933 while running from a bad situation at home and suspected of having set fire to a barn, fourteen-year-old Ross finds haven with a loving family which helps him make an important decision.

More books that take place during the Great Depression »

More books that take place in the 1930s »


The Big Read is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services and Arts Midwest.


The County of San Diego and the San Diego County Library disclaim any responsibility for the accuracy of the translations.