Jewish Values: In the Neighborhood of True

Place of Publication: 
Chapel Hill, NC
Publication Year: 
Number of Pages: 
320 p.
In 1959, Ruth Robb moves from New York City to Atlanta. The daughter of a former Magnolia Queen, she is welcomed into a world of surface beauty and perfection, where girls learn society rules from their "pink books" and gardeners measure the distance between chaise lounges with a ruler. Her friends, the pastel-clad girls from Tea and Etiquette, think of New York as full of "Jews and commies." What they don't know is that Ruth herself is Jewish-and Ruth intends to keep it under wraps. She can be Jewish on the weekends at the temple, where the rabbi preaches controversial sermons about integration, and pass for Christian everywhere else: at her school, where buildings are named after Confederate generals; at the exclusive club, where Jews aren't allowed in the door; and, most of all, with Davis Jefferson, a boy whose blue eyes and deep dimple make Ruth fall hard and fast. But when her love affair with the South is punctured by an act of violence, Ruth, who has been taught that her voice is a "strong spice" to be used sparingly, must decide how much-and who-she is willing to risk by speaking up. Inspired by the 1958 bombing of an Atlanta synagogue, this novel uses its immersive historical setting to convey truths about hatred that remain relevant today. Ruth is an initially shallow protagonist who comes to realize the smallness and egocentrism of her own actions and whose complex choices ultimately transform her into a braver, fuller version of herself. A Sydney Taylor Notable Book for Young Adults.
Book ID: 
Sydney Taylor Winner: 
Age Level: