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Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry


 The authors of the Global Book Club are happy to post the following contribution from 5th Grader, Mary Margaret from the Upward Elementary School in Flat Rock, North Carolina. Mary Margaret read Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry and wrote a journal entry from Cassie's point of view:

T.J.. The name starts from the pit of my stomach, comes up through my chest and rolls off my tongue like a snake. T.J. is my big brother Stacy's best friend. I've never quite liked T.J., and recently I've really not liked him. T.J. is the one who got my mother fired from her job. T.J. is the one who was hanging out with those white boys, R.W. and Melvin. T.J.'s the one who cheats on tests and lets my big brother take the blame for it.

Sometimes I really hate T.J., but right now, I feel sorry for him. In T.J.'s life time, he has been stupid and made some bad choices. Yes, I gave him a second chance, and a third, and even a fourth, but when he got my mom fired, I just got fed-up and completely stopped talking to him. But that night when he wobbled into Stacey's room and told us the story of how he was with those white boys, R.W. and Melvin, and how they went and broke into a store. Then they stole a pistol and T.J. thought it wasn't a good idea. They got caught and T.J. was the one accused when he didn't do anything! T.J. said to R.W. and Melvin that he was going to tell someone what happened, and R.W. and Melvin punched T.J. in the stomach really, really hard. At first, I didn't believe him, but then he showed us his blue and purple stomach and he started coughing up blood. That's when I knew he was telling the truth.

Now T.J. is going to get hung, and I can't help but cry out for him. I hope T.J. understands how much we're going to miss him!

"I had never liked T.J., but he had always been there, a part of me, a part of my life."