One Crazy Summer


One Crazy Summer



Publication Year





218 pages





Item Type



In the summer of 1968, after traveling from Brooklyn to Oakland, California, to spend a month with the mother they barely know, eleven-year-old Delphine and her two younger sisters arrive to a cold welcome as they discover that their mother, a dedicated poet and printer, is resentful of the intrusion of their visit and wants them to attend a nearby Black Panther summer camp.

Grade Level

3-5, 6-8

Lexile Measure


Diversity Topics

Family Relationships; Single parent; Separation; single father; separated parents; two homes

Main Character

female child


Black (African American)

Family Formation

single father


Audie Award, 2011, Finalist, Achievement in Production
Coretta Scott King Book Award, 2011, Winner, Author
Friends of Children and Literature (FOCAL) Award, 2013, Winner
Goodreads Choice Award, 2010, Nominee, Middle Grade
Great Lakes Great Books Award, 2011, Honor Book, Grades 6-8
John Newbery Medal, 2011, Honor Book
Judy Lopez Memorial Award for Children's Literature, 2011, Honor Book
National Book Award, 2010, Finalist, Young People's Literature
Parents' Choice Award, 2010, Gold, Fiction
School Library Journal's Battle of the Kids' Books, 2011, Nominee
Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction, 2011, Winner
10 Children's Books with Black Girl Protagonists, 2016 Children's Book
100 Great Childrens Books 100 Years, 2013
100 Magnificent Children's Books, 2010 Middle Grade Fiction
50 Books about Family, 2011 Middle year
50 Multicultural Books Every Child Should Know, 2015 Age (9-12)
Best Children's Books of the Year, 2011 Ages (9 to 12)
Booklist Book Review Stars, 2010
Booklist Editors' Choice: Books for Youth, 2010 Fiction Middle Grade
Booklist Top 10 Black History Books for Youth, 2011
Booklist Top 10 Historical Fiction for Youth, 2010
Building STEAM with Dia, 2014 Information in English and Spanish
Capitol Choices: Noteworthy Books for Children and Teens, 2011
Choices, 2011 Children's Fiction
Great Middle School Reads, 2013 Who Am I If Not My Family?
Horn Book Fanfare, 2010 Fiction
Images of Community: Selected Books for Children and Young Adult, 2011 Pulling Together: Communities in Action (Fiction)
Kids Reading List, 2010 Age (10 and up)
Kirkus Best Children's Books, 2010
Kirkus Book Review Stars, 2010
Lasting Connections, 2010 Social Studies
Marching On: Selected Books about the Civil Rights Movement for Children and Teens, 2013 Books for K5: Picture Books and Fiction
New York Public Library's 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing, 2010 Stories for Older Readers
Notable Children's Books, 2011 Middle Reader
Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts, 2011
Publishers Weekly Best Children's Books, 2010 Fiction
School Library Journal Best Books, 2010 Fiction
School Library Journal Book Review Stars,
School Library Journal Book Review Stars, 2010
Selected Audiobooks for Young Adults, 2011 Fiction
Washington Post Best Children's Books, 2010 Pre-Teens
YALSA Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults, 2011 Young Adult Fiction
YALSA Top 10 Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults, 2011


Black Panther Party; Civil Rights movement; mothers; poets; sisters; Oakland, California; abandonment

Diversity Impact


One Crazy Summer