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Spotlight: How High the Moon by Karyn Parsons

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To Kill a Mockingbird meets One Crazy Summer in this powerful, bittersweet debut about one girl’s journey to reconnect with her mother and learn the truth about her father in the tumultuous times of the Jim Crow South.

In the small town of Alcolu, South Carolina, in 1944, 12-year-old Ella spends her days fishing and running around with her best friend Henry and cousin Myrna. But life is not always so sunny for Ella, who gets bullied for her light skin tone, and whose mother is away pursuing a jazz singer dream in Boston. 

So Ella is ecstatic when her mother invites her to visit for Christmas. Little does she expect the truths she will discover about her mother, the father she never knew and her family’s most unlikely history. 

And after a life-changing month, she returns South and is shocked by the news that her schoolmate George has been arrested for the murder of two local white girls. 

Bittersweet and eye-opening, How High the Moon is a timeless novel about a girl finding herself in a world all but determined to hold her down.

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About the Author

Karyn Parsons is best known for her role as Will Smith’s ditsy cousin Hilary Banks on NBC’s The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. After leaving acting behind, Karyn has gone on to found and produce Sweet Blackberry, an award-winning series of children’s...

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