The Liberation of Gabriel King

The Liberation of Gabriel King

Book - 2005
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In Georgia during the summer of 1976, Gabriel, a white boy who is being bullied, and Frita, an African American girl who is facing prejudice, decide to overcome their many fears together as they enter fifth grade.
Publisher: New York : G.P. Putnam's Sons, 2005.
ISBN: 9780399239915
039923991X
Characteristics: 151 p. ; 21 cm.

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Tess1144
Sep 23, 2016

This coming of age story of cross-cultural friendship takes place in the summer of 1976 in Hollowell, Georgia, USA. Afraid of many things, Gabriel King fears the bullies awaiting him in fifth grade the most so his best friend Frita devises a plan to help Gabriel overcome all his fears as well as hers. While working together to overcome their fears one by one, Gabriel eventually learns from Frita (who is African-American) that she and her family have been terrorized by the Ku Klux Klan where they used to live and now KKK members are making their presence known in Hollowell.

vpl_childrens Dec 15, 2015

1976 CE US. Here a very serious subject is made approachable. Gabriel, a sensitive white boy, is the victim of bullying. Frita, a tough black girl, protects him. Set against a backdrop of charged racial politics, the description of their friendship is funny and touching.

LibrLdyMapleValley Jan 23, 2015

Gabriel King is afraid of just about everything. OK. He is afraid of EVERYTHING! This makes life a hard and scary thing for him. The biggest fear he has right now is moving up into the 5th grade where he's pretty sure that the teachers are all mean and the bullies will beat him up daily. What's the point of going into 5th grade if that's all you have to look forward to?
But Gabriel has a couple of things going for him. First, he has a family who loves him. Second, he has his best friend Frita. And what a friend she is. Gabriel thinks that Frita isn't afraid of anything. She can beat up the bullies easily, 5th grade doesn't scare her and spiders don't even send a shiver down her back. When Frita hears that Gabriel doesn't want to move on to 5th grade with her because he's afraid she comes up with a plan to cure him of all his fears before the end of summer. They both make lists of their fears and over the summer they will face each one until they aren't afraid any more. They start with spiders.
Together they discover that there are some things scarier than spiders, cows and 5th grade combined. They face racism, the Ku Klux Klan and real hatred; some of the scariest things around.
The Liberation of Gabriel King will make you laugh (hard!) right out loud and it might possibly make you cry too. You will walk away from this book with two new friends named Gabriel and Frita and you won't forget them any time soon.

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