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Lawrence Hill Books

Curveball - Plot & Excerpts

A girl gets sick of a rose.  —GWENDOLYN BROOKS1    Gabby Street’s baseball camp ended with the close of summer, and fifteen-year-old Tomboy reluctantly returned to classes. “I wasn’t happy going to school,” she said. “I don’t know if I was slow to start or what, but it was rough.” Tomboy entered the Saint Paul public schools when she was ten, after her family moved from West Virginia. When she turned twelve and was ready for junior high, local teachers recommended Hammond, the district’s school for special education students. Teachers realized that Tomboy had difficulty keeping up with the other youngsters in class, did not appear interested in academic work, and often grew frustrated. She may have had an undetected learning disability, but schools during the Depression rarely had resources for evaluating students’ specific learning problems. Without knowing exactly what her learning difficulty was, Tomboy entered Hammond—a school that emphasized vocational subjects to prepare pupils for work in the trades.

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