More about Susan:
Susan Hill Long has worked as an editor and has written several books for beginning readers. Her honors include Bank Street College Best Books, Oregon Book Award finalist, and the Katherine Paterson Prize. Her debut novel, Whistle in the Dark (September 2013), takes MG readers to 1925-era Missouri with a story about a boy and a dog, mining and moonshine, a mysterious girl and a devastating tornado. She lives in Portland, Oregon, with her husband and two daughters.
Introducing Whistle in the Dark…
What Clem wants for his thirteenth birthday is a dog. What he gets is a miner’s cap. It’s the 1920s in Leadanna, Missouri, and money is tight in the Harding household. So, Clem, a gifted student and talented writer, must leave school and join Pap in the lead mines, spending his days digging in the suffocating dark beneath the crushing weight of the earth.
While searching for another way to help support his family—Grampy’s suffering from miner’s consumption and little sister Esther with epilepsy—Clem meets Lindy, the daughter of a local moonshiner, whose face bears a scar from a terrible accident. The two become friends, but soon a series of disasters strike, including a devastating tornado.
Clem’s friendship with Lindy and the devotion of a remarkable stray dog help him to reconcile his dreams with the reality of family responsibility and face some hard decisions about his future.
This beautifully written coming-of-age novel shines with true characters, a vivid setting, and heartfelt relationships.