“This non-depressing Depression story depicts a “creative” family trying to avoid foreclosure on their property that is planted in Christmas trees. (In Texas?!?) The glossary is a great addition for the American 1930s public history lesson. Randall Platt continues her award-winning writing—highly recommended! “
Library Director, Warner Pacific College, and Willa Award reviewer
“Can’t see the trees for the forest? Liberty Justice Jones can, but then she’s brilliant— little good it does her in a small town in the throes of depression that leave a fatherless family without anything, sometimes even food. Without, except for resourcefulness in the worst of times. This is a transcendent story for all the seasons of life, offering a lesson for here and now. “
—JOYCE GIBSON ROACH
Author of The Cowgirls and Horned Toad Canyon
A red-haired girl in search of an education, a draft horse in search of one last chance, a broken-down tractor in search of a missing gear, and a Mexican- American boy in search of a home join forces in a time when nothing was king
Like most everybody else in the middle of The Great Depression, fifteen year old Liberty Justice Jones is, well, stuck. But living smack-dab in the Lost Pines of Texas, where anyone can walk into the forest and chop a tree for free, with a debt-burdened mom who’s trying to make a go of a newfangled idea called a Christmas Tree farm—that’s stuck bad. Espcially if your dream is college.
Liberty’s younger brother, Jefferson, is no help, and neither is their addled grandmother. Liberty’s only hope is her own wits. But if she’s so smart, she wonders, why can’t she figure out a way to help their family and get off this wreck of a farm?
Learning of the five-hundred-dollar prize for the most beautiful Christmas tree delivered to the state capitol, Liberty hatches a plot. With the aid of their aging draft horse, Quiller, their derelict tractor, Stella, and Rudy, a kid pulled between America and Mexico and fresh off the rails, she’s determined to move a twenty-five foot tree all the way to Austin in the snow and ice—without getting caught.
With the sparkling dialogue and spunky humor that fans have come to love in her heroines, and perceptive eye and ear for historical detail, award-winning author Randall Platt takes readers young and old on a spirited adventure set in a tune when dreams were all folks had.
HELLIE wins the Will Rogers Medallion Award!
The 2010 Will Rogers Medallion Award Committee has chosen HELLIE JONDOE in recognition of outstanding achievement in the publishing of Western Fiction – Young Adult
HELLIE receives the Moonbeam Children’s Book Award!
HELLIE wins ForeWord Reviews’ BRONZE medal for best Young Adult Fiction!
Join me in celebrating as “Hellie Jondoe” is named the 2010 Winner of the Willa Literary Award!
Available Now, look for my new young adult novel
from Texas Tech University Press!
Just who is this HELLIE JONDOE? A tough street Arab, a seasoned pickpocket and a small girl in big trouble. There’s a time to cut and run and there’s a time to stay and fight – knowing which takes savvy and guts. It also takes heart – all found deep down inside HELLIE JONDOE.
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING ABOUT HELLIE JONDOE BY RANDALL PLATT
“Fast-paced, plot-twisting, and both heartbreaking and beautifully told, Hellie Jondoe captures the speech, setting, and time. Characterizations are wonderfully realized, none more than Hellie herself, alive with contradictions, exasperations and her own code of honor … Hellie Jondoe is highly recommended.”
HISTORICAL NOVEL SOCIETY
“This is solid historical fiction with a scrappy heroine who is genuinely tough and a true survivor. Irrepressible and irreverent.”
“Platt’s (The Likes of Me) realistic dialogue and period details contribute greatly, and readers will be drawn in as Hellie’s willfulness proves a formidable asset against her many obstacles.”
“As always, Randall Platt brings us western authenticity, charming plot surprises and captivating characters like – Hellie Jondoe — we cheer for, all with writing worthy of remembering. Enjoy this YA novel that captures the heart and the heart of the West.”
Jane Kirkpatrick, award-winning
author of A Flickering Light
“A captivating story, well-told and delightfully populated with endearing misfits . . . Hellie Jondoe works for adults both young and old.”
Marjorie Reynolds, author of The Starlite Drive-In and
The Civil Wars of Jonah Moran
“Being hardened by one’s environment doesn’t make it impossible to lighten up. “Hellie Jondoe” tells the story of an east coast orphan girl who after a rough early child hood goes to Oregon to live under a western ranch woman. Not only does she have to answer to authority for the first time, but she seems to have to care for others. A charming story of a early twentieth century orphan, “Hellie Jondoe” is a very entertaining and riveting story that should not be ignored.”
So, you’ve been warned. You just watch out for that HELLIE JONDOE! She’s a girl who can pick your pocket, lift your watch, and steal your heart.
Email Randall for an all points bulletin on HELLIE JONDOE.