The Coming Home Cafe

Gayle Pearson, Author, JR. Fre Pearson, Author Atheneum Books $14.95 (200p) ISBN 978-0-689-31338-7
The time is 1933, and even though Elizabeth knows that the Depression is affecting Chicago, she is shocked when her next-door neighbors are forced from their home. Surely her own family isn't really poor, but simply ``having a hard time.'' As their money dwindles, Elizabeth grows desperate to help; after searching fruitlessly for work, she goes on the road. She joins Eddie, a boy who jumps trains, and eventually they form a threesome with Lenora, a black woman. Their episodic trials convincingly depict what such a grim, rootless life must have been like. Pearson has a gift for creating immediate, vivid scenes; she also has a fine sense of metaphor and historical detail. Unfortunately, the story lacks a building up of suspense from chapter to chapter and a feeling of directon. Even if this reflects the time portrayed, it makes for poorly focused reading. Ages 11-up. (September)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1988
Release date: 10/01/1988
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