August 15, 2004

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse

coverMy brother-in-law gave me this for my birthday last year and I finally got around to reading it a couple of months ago.

Wow. On its cover is a list of 9 different awards and honors this book has won. Not surprised.

This novel is told from the point of view of a young girl living in the Texas panhandle in 1934-35, the time and place known as the dust bowl. A long drought and over-cultivation has resulted in all the topsoil in the region blowing away. I vaguely remember learning about this event in school, but I didn't really get what a disaster it was until reading Hesse's book. Her character Billie Jo witnesses the general torment her family and friends are going through. And if that's not enough, some equally terrible things happen to her and her immediate family.

Not a happy book. Oh, did I mention that every chapter is a poem? Amazing.

Posted by jeffy at August 15, 2004 11:20 PM

I loved this book! the first time i read it was in 5 grade and it moved me sooo much. Ihave read this book twice since then

Posted by: brie at December 15, 2004 04:42 PM

please e-mail me Karen Hesse's e-mail address or address. Please - ASAP! Thanks the book was okay

Posted by: Siera at February 10, 2005 10:21 AM

That last comment has been posted repeatedly today (four times so far, but I think I've blocked it now)

What would make this person think that I would have an author's email or postal address? And if I had it, what makes this person think I would give it to them just because they demanded it ASAP in a comment to my weblog?

I had a similar request on my review of M. T. Anderson's dystopic novel Feed and in the comments there I offered the seeker a clue about contacting authors. I encourage my current commenter and any excited would-be author contacters to follow that link and read the last comment.

And good luck with your homework.

Posted by: jeffy at February 10, 2005 03:37 PM

I really need some info on my author for my 7th grade english project, i am doing a report on Karen Hesse and i REALLY need some info, if you have anything at all, please e-mail me.

Autumn Klinker

Posted by: Autumn Klinker at March 9, 2005 01:53 PM

How many books did you write?
What's your favorite book you wrote?

Posted by: Hannah Hines at May 20, 2005 09:50 AM

I loved this book so much that i have read it 3 times! At frist hade to buy the book for school and I thought it was going to be boring but it was the total oppiste.Now I am doing a book report on it!!!!!!lol

Posted by: kim vow at May 22, 2005 11:51 AM

I teach English and want one of my students to write a dissertation on Karen Hesse's "Out of the Dust." I wish to know about the articles, books etc that have been written about this book. Also, I would also like to contact Karen Hesse.

Posted by: anurag at September 14, 2005 12:08 PM

hey! im doing your book Out of the Dust for my language class. i love your book! it is really neat and i just really like it!

Posted by: Dana at October 2, 2005 04:39 PM

i need help! i need 2 find out more about karen hesse and her works..i am writing a chapter about her anything about her besides her book, autobiography, and life.if you found any information please send it to my email.thank you!

Posted by: martina at October 17, 2005 11:06 AM

RAR!!!!! poop is good

Posted by: poophead at November 1, 2005 03:09 PM

Please send me Karen Hesse's e-mail address by tomorrow, Saturday, November 11, 2005, because I'm doing a research project on her, and I really need it!!!!!!!!! Thanks.

Posted by: really needed at November 11, 2005 02:38 PM

Hello, Our class is reading Out of the Dust, and we are really exited we found this website, we really want you e-mail us back and share anything that you would like too please e-mail us at,

Mrs. Gliessman class

Posted by: Kimberly A. at January 6, 2006 12:10 PM

You may be surprised to discover that this site doesn't have any connection to Ms. Hesse other than the fact that I reviewed one of her books.

If you want to contact an author, here's what you do:

  1. Search the internet for the author's own web page. If you don't find one then they probably don't have one and you should go on to step 2. If you find their web page, they may offer a way for you to contact them. If they do, use it. If they do not, they might be sending you the not too subtle hint that they are unable to accept contacts from their readers. This may be frustrating to you, but you must remember that it takes time to read and answer mail from readers, and any time an author spends answering your mail is time they don't spend writing more books for you to read. Try to respect their wishes.

  2. If you simply must contact that author, there is an almost sure-fire way of getting a message to them. Write them a letter in care of their publisher. Look in your book to see who published it. There may be an address right there on the copyright page. Otherwise you should be able to find the publisher's address on their web page.

  3. Write a letter on actual paper, put it in an envelope, attach postage, and mail it to:

    My Favorite Author
    c/o Their Publisher
    Their Publisher's Address
    NY, NY 12345

    If you expect a response, include a self-addressed stamped envelope with your letter.

    The publisher will forward your letter to the author unless the author has explicitly requested otherwise.

    Chances are, you will not get a response, even if you include the SASE. See the note in #1 above for why you shouldn't take this personally.

    It may be frustrating, but if you put yourself in the author's shoes you will see the sense of it.

Good luck!

Posted by: jeffy at January 6, 2006 12:34 PM

i love this book, but i wish you had a copy of the whole book with every page visible.

Posted by: sydney at May 7, 2006 05:21 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?