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The Resource Money hungry, Sharon Flake

Money hungry, Sharon Flake

Label
Money hungry
Title
Money hungry
Statement of responsibility
Sharon Flake
Creator
Subject
Genre
Language
eng
Summary
All thirteen-year-old Raspberry can think of is making money so that she and her mother never have to worry about living on the streets again
Storyline
Writing style
Character
Review
  • Gr. 7-10. “If you got money, people can’t take stuff from you--not your house, or your ride, not your family. They can’t do nothing much to you, if you got a bankroll backing you up.” Thirteen-year-old Raspberry Hill knows what it’s like not to have security. After leaving her drug-addicted father, Raspberry and her mother lived on friends’ couches and on the street before they landed in the projects. Now, while Raspberry’s mom works two jobs and goes to school, Raspberry obsessively does anything she can to grow that bankroll to back her up; she sells pencils and old candy; cleans houses for the elderly; and washes cars at stoplights. Her three close friends both support her and mock her. There’s Mia, who fights against her Korean and African American parents, wanting to identify herself only as black; Ja’nae, who lives with loving grandparents but yearns for her flaky, estranged mother; and Zora, whose divorced physician father, Dr. Mitchell, seems to be romancing Raspberry’s mother, which upsets both girls. The razor-sharp dialogue and unerring details evoke characters, rooms, and neighborhoods with economy and precision, creating a story that’s immediate, vivid, and unsensationalized. Without synthetic drama or stereotypes, Flake shows poverty and how it touches everyone, whether it’s the actual absence of money or the fear of losing it. A few of the characters are less developed; Dr. Mitchell in particular is vague and a little too perfect. But Flake creates scenes of heart-stopping tenderness and tension between Raspberry and her friends and especially with her mother, as they struggle to leave the projects, suffering breakdowns and break-ins along the way, finally moving into a house of their own. Whatever teens’ own familial insecurities may be, they will read something of their own lives in this title from the author of The Skin I’m In (1998). (Reviewed June 1, 2001) -- Gillian Engberg
  • Gr 7-9 –Raspberry Hill, 13, loves money. She sells clearance holiday candy and pencils, and keeps her lunch money rather than eat. She hoards every dime she can gather and hides her cash in her room. Greed drives her and is more important than friends, boys, or her mother's love. Ever since her father got involved with drugs and she and her mother lived on the streets for a while, cash makes her feel safe. She and her mother now have a place of their own, but life in the projects is hardly ideal. Everybody has problems: Mai Kim, with her mixed heritage; Ja'nae, whose mother deserted her; the bothersome neighbors, Check and Shoe, who help drug dealers in order to eat. When Raspberry's mother finds her stash, she thinks it's stolen, and throws it out the window. Everything else–furniture, dishes, and clothes–is stolen from their apartment and the teen and her mother are on the street again. Raspberry then has to face the questions in her life and work with her mother toward possible solutions. Flake does a stunning job of intertwining Raspberry's story with daily urban scenes, and she writes smoothly and knowingly of teen problems, discussions, and reactions. Focused storytelling, clear writing, and a compelling voice are the highlights of this short novel.–Gail Richmond, San Diego Unified Schools, CA --Gail Richmond (Reviewed July 1, 2001) (School Library Journal, vol 47, issue 7, p107)
  • The author of The Skin I'm In offers another provocative slice of city life, vibrantly evoking its sights, sounds and smells. With her brassy voice and saucy attitude, 13-year-old Raspberry Hill emerges as a vivacious heroine. She knows first-hand that living in the housing project is better than being out on the streets, but she and her mother are equally determined to move to a safer neighborhood. That's why Raspberry is so "money hungry," hoarding her savings and doing almost anything ("I wouldn't do nothing bad. Nothing that would hurt people, like selling dope, or shoplifting") to earn a few extra dollars. Her stinginess (well known throughout the school) causes as many problems as solutions. When her money issues begin interfering with her friendships, Raspberry is forced to reexamine her priorities and values. Flake candidly expresses the difficulty in breaking the cycle of poverty and leaves it up to readers to judge Raspberry's acts. Ironically, it's not the heroine's stash of hard-earned cash that brings about positive change for the family, but rather her mother's ingenuity and the support offered by generous neighbors. Ages 8-12. (June) — Staff (Reviewed June 18, 2001) (Publishers Weekly, vol 248, issue 25, p82)
  • Flake (The Skin I'm In, 1998) gives a rock-solid portrayal of an inner-city life where money colors everything. At 13, Raspberry avidly collects opportunities to make a little green wherever she can find them. Readers see her obsession driving her to peddle rotten chocolate and spare pencils long before they learn of her history of living on the street or the tenuousness of her home security that makes her greed understandable. Her friends both express disgust at her avidity and want in on the spoils. Raspberry's mom and girlfriends Janae, Mai, and Zora along with the guys that swirl around them leap to life as Raspberry doggedly pursues her desire to stash enough money away for some kind of safety. But there is never enough, and earnings are hard to hang onto. The energetic interaction of the projects' neighborhood, lively language, the realistic school scenes and Raspberry's moneymaking schemes, along with the inevitable convoluted ethical dilemmas keep the pace brisk. Suddenly, Mom erupts when she thinks Raspberry's begun to steal, and she tosses money out the window in an effort to wake her up. The result is that their home is burglarized. Realizing they'll never be safe there again, the two hit the streets in a move that devastates Raspberry. There's a satisfying fairy-tale ending, but Flake successfully conveys a situation where life is precarious. Kids who live like Raspberry will find validation in seeing themselves sympathetically portrayed, and more pampered readers will find their eyes opened wide. (Fiction. 10-14) (Kirkus Reviews, May 1, 2001)
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/bookUI
081618
Cataloging source
DLC
http://library.link/vocab/creatorName
Flake, Sharon
Index
no index present
Intended audience
  • 650L
  • Decoding demand: 77 (high)
  • Semantic demand: 97 (very high)
  • Syntactic demand: 92 (very high)
  • Structure demand: 87 (very high)
Intended audience source
  • Lexile
  • Lexile
Interest level
MG
Literary form
fiction
http://library.link/vocab/ext/novelist/minGradeLevel
  • 7
  • 9
Reading level
4.2
http://library.link/vocab/resourcePreferred
True
Study program name
Accelerated Reader AR
http://library.link/vocab/subjectName
  • Money
  • Mothers and daughters
  • Single-parent families
  • Inner cities
  • African Americans
Target audience
pre adolescent
Label
Money hungry, Sharon Flake
Instantiates
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
405254
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
187 pages
Isbn
9780786805488
Isbn Type
(trade)
Lccn
00063387
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780786805488
  • (Sirsi) ADB-7157
Label
Money hungry, Sharon Flake
Publication
Carrier category
volume
Carrier category code
  • nc
Carrier MARC source
rdacarrier
Content category
text
Content type code
  • txt
Content type MARC source
rdacontent
Control code
405254
Dimensions
22 cm
Edition
First edition.
Extent
187 pages
Isbn
9780786805488
Isbn Type
(trade)
Lccn
00063387
Media category
unmediated
Media MARC source
rdamedia
Media type code
  • n
System control number
  • (Sirsi) i9780786805488
  • (Sirsi) ADB-7157

Library Locations

    • Pleasant Hill BranchBorrow it
      211 E. William Cannon Blvd., Austin, TX, 78745, US
      30.1922461 -97.7771661
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