Sunday, April 4, 2010

Review: Leaving Gee's Bend by Irene Latham

Title: Leaving Gee's Bend
Author: Irene Latham
Category: Middle Grade
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Putnam, 2010


It is 1932 and 10- year-old Ludelphia Bennett is growing up in the poor and isolated little community of Gee's Bend in Alabama. Although blind in one eye she loves to quilt and her sewing is a comfort to her whenever life gets difficult. When her mama becomes very ill the general opinion is that nothing can be done but Ludelphia is unwilling to accept this and ,despite the fact she has never left Gee's bend before, decides to travel the 40 miles to Camden Town and bring back the doctor.
Her adventure brings her face to face with challenges, decisions and a world full of new experiences both good and bad.

It is a story about choices and having the courage to follow your heart even when it means leaving the safety and security of home and step alone into the unknown.
It is Ludelphia's story and it's beautifully told from the perspective of  her youth and innocence.

It left me wanting to know more - about the quilting history that first inspired the author to write the book and about the times in which it is set. It raises a lot of questions and I think it would be an excellent book for use in the classroom by providing topics for further study and discussion.

Leaving Gee's Bend by Irene Latham is a wonderful debut novel .  Read more about the author and her writing at her blog here and website here.

I read Leaving Gee's Bend as part of its International Book Tour.


  1. I can't quilt (or do anything sewing related really) but I think it is fascinating. Leaving Gee's Bend looks like a beautiful book. I enjoyed your review.

  2. Nice review, and sounds like a good book with one brave girl

  3. This book sounds amazing! I have to check this one!