Best Selling Books by Kimberly Willis Holt

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Mister and Me

release date: Nov 01, 2000
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Mister and Me
Jolene's family was just Momma and Grandpa until big, loud Leroy Redfield started taking Momma dancing. Jolene refuses to call him anything but "Mister." Without a name, he isn't a real person to her. But then Jolene learns that Mister wants to marry Momma. Is there anything Jolene can do to make him go away? "The warmth and love in the Johnson household envelops the novel... Jolene's willingness to face the uncertainties of her future may well give courage to readers confronting sea changes of their own."-Publishers Weekly Awards: ( New York Public Library "100 Titles for Reading and Sharing" ( A Texas Bluebonnet Master List Book

Dancing In Cadillac Light

release date: Nov 11, 2002
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Dancing In Cadillac Light
1968 looks like it'll be a pretty good year for Jaynell Lambert. The town's going to pave the dirt road she lives on, her girly-girl sister, Racine, isn't driving her completely crazy, and Grandpap has just moved in with his new emerald green Cadillac convertible. Jaynell and Grandpap have something special. But why won't Grandpap tell her the reason he visits with the dirt-poor Pickens family on the other side of town? When Jaynell finds out Grandpap's secret, the legacy of an old man transforms a family, and a town. "At once gritty and poetic, stark and sentimental . . . a solid page turner. Holt once again displays her remarkable gift."(School Library Journal, starred review)

Keeper of the Night

release date: Sep 27, 2011
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Keeper of the Night
A powerful new novel from the award-winning author of When Zachary Beaver Came to Town. Isabel's mother died peacefully. At least that's what Isabel likes to think since no one will talk about the truth. But the truth has a way of revealing itself at night. Ta`Ta sleeps curled up on the floor right where Mama's body was found. Olivia wets her bed and wakes repeatedly from nightmares, and Frank starts carving his anger into his bedroom wall. It's up to Isabel to help her family get beyond the pain and loss—to be the keeper of the night. But who will be there for Isabel and help her through to the other side? Set on the lush island of Guam, Kimberly Willis Holt has written a painfully beautiful story about a young woman's struggle to protect her family after suicide hits home.

The Water Seeker

release date: May 11, 2010
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The Water Seeker
Amos Kincaid is the son of a dowser – a person gifted in knowing how to "find" water deep in the ground. As a young person, Amos doesn't reveal his gift to others; he's not sure he wants the burden. But through his experiences growing up and crossing the Oregon Trail, Amos learns about life's harsh realities, especially the pain in losing loved ones. As he cares for those around him, Amos comes to accept his dowsing fate. This epic novel is a fascinating period piece about the westward expansion and one man's destiny as he searches for love and family.

When Zachary Beaver Came to Town

release date: Jul 19, 2011
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When Zachary Beaver Came to Town
National Book Award Winner The red words painted on the trailer caused quite a buzz around town and before an hour was up, half of Antler was standing in line with two dollars clutched in hand to see the fattest boy in the world. Toby Wilson is having the toughest summer of his life. It's the summer his mother leaves for good; the summer his best friend's brother returns from Vietnam in a coffin. And the summer that Zachary Beaver, the fattest boy in the world, arrives in their sleepy Texas town. While it's a summer filled with heartache of every kind, it's also a summer of new friendships gained and old friendships renewed. And it's Zachary Beaver who turns the town of Antler upside down and leaves everyone, especially Toby, changed forever. With understated elegance, Kimberly Willis Holt tells a compelling coming-of-age story about a thirteen-year-old boy struggling to find himself in an imperfect world. At turns passionate and humorous, this extraordinary novel deals sensitively and candidly with obesity, war, and the true power of friendship. When Zachary Beaver Came to Town is the winner of the 1999 National Book Award for Young People's Literature. This title has Common Core connections.

Blooming at the Texas Sunrise Motel

release date: Mar 28, 2017
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Blooming at the Texas Sunrise Motel
After the sudden death of her parents, Stevie, thirteen, is sent to live at a rundown motel, where she charms everyone except her estranged grandfather.

The Lost Boy's Gift

release date: Apr 30, 2019
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The Lost Boy's Gift
Kimberly Willis Holt explores themes of divorce, acceptance, intergenerational friendship, and the power that comes with noticing in The Lost Boy's Gift, an insightful middle-grade novel. There are places where you want to go and places where you want to leave. There are also places where you want to stay. Nine-year-old Daniel must move across the county with his mom after his parents’ divorce. He’s leaving behind his whole life—everything—and he’s taking a suitcase of anger with him. But Daniel is in for a surprise when he settles into While-a-Way Lane and meets his new neighbors—the Lemonade Girl, the hopscotching mailman, the tiny creatures, and especially Tilda Butter. Tilda knows how to look and listen closely, and it's that gift that helps Daniel find his way in that curious placed called While-a-Way Lane. This title has Common Core connections. Christy Ottaviano Books

My Louisiana Sky

release date: Feb 15, 2011
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My Louisiana Sky
Tiger Ann Parker wants nothing more than to get out of the rural town of Saitter, Louisiana--far away from her mentally disabled mother, her "slow" father who can't read an electric bill, and her classmates who taunt her. So when Aunt Dorie Kay asks Tiger to sp the summer with her in Baton Rouge, Tiger can't wait to go. But before she leaves, the sudden revelation of a dark family secret prompts Tiger to make a decision that will ultimately change her life. Set in the South in the late 1950s, this coming-of-age novel explores a twelve-year-old girl's struggle to accept her grandmother's death, her mentally deficient parents, and the changing world around her. It is a novel filled with beautiful language and unforgettable characters, and the importance of family and home. My Louisiana Sky is a 1998 Boston Globe - Horn Book Award Honor Book for Fiction.

The Adventures of Granny Clearwater and Little Critter

release date: Oct 12, 2010
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The Adventures of Granny Clearwater and Little Critter
As the Clearwaters travel west, fearless Granny and Little Critter are jolted from the horse-drawn wagon and have many exotic adventures before being reunited with the rest of their family. Includes author's notes about the western migration that took place in the United States between 1815 and 1840.

Waiting for Gregory

release date: Mar 21, 2006
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Waiting for Gregory
The first picture book from National Book Award winner Kimberly Willis Holt When exactly is cousin Gregory going to be born? asks little Iris. Each family member has a different answer to her question. While she's waiting for what seems like forever, Iris thinks about all the exciting things she and her new cousin will someday do together. And given Iris' vibrant imagination, there's no telling what to expect. National Book Award winner Kimberly Willis Holt offers a unique take on some of the traditional and not-so-traditional myths surrounding a baby's arrival, with an extra layer of imagination added by Gabi Swiatkowska's fresh and whimsical paintings.
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