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Road to Paris
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The Road to Paris
Putnam Juvenile, October 2006
ISBN: 978-0-399-24537-4

From the book

"Sometimes I wish I was like my name, thought Paris, somewhere far away, out of reach. Somewhere safe down south or on the other side of the ocean. Instead, she was neither Paris nor Richmond. She felt like a nobody caught in the dark spaces in between. A nobody on her way to nowhere.

from The Road to Paris
© 2006 by Nikki Grimes

There is a teachers' guide available for this book.

Please visit the website of Inspire Life Skills Training, which offers various forms of support to foster kids who have aged out of the system. Can you help?

About the book

Paris has just moved in with the Lincoln family, and isn’t thrilled to be in yet another foster home. She has a tough time trusting people, and she misses her brother, who’s been sent to a boys’ home. Over time, the Lincolns grow on Paris. But no matter how hard she tries to fit in, she can’t ignore the feeling that she never will, especially in a town that’s mostly white while she is half black. It isn’t long before Paris has a big decision to make about where she truly belongs.


"In clear short chapters, Grimes tells a beautiful story of family, friendship, and faith from the viewpoint of a child in search of home in a harsh world. Nine-year-old Paris' closest bond is with her older brother, Malcolm, who protects her when their alcoholic mother has no use for them and when they flee their abusive foster home. Then Paris is placed in a loving foster family, but the price is separation from Malcolm. What is more, as a biracial kid in a mainly white neighborhood, it's difficult for her to find a friend, and the racism is ugly. Her foster brother tells her to keep God in her pocket, something she never forgets, even when she must leave because her birth mother wants "to give this family thing another go." The big upheavals are quietly told; and although God is Paris' support, the religion is not didactic. The foster family is kind but never idealized, just as Paris' birth mother is not demonized. In one hilarious scene, Paris tricks the self-important therapist, and it is the human story behind the case file that readers will remember. —Hazel Rochman" Booklist, starred review


Nominated for the 2009-2010 Nebraska Golden Sower Award, Intermediate divison
Sasquatch Reading Award List, sponsored by the Washington Library Media Association
2007 Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book
Starred review in Booklist
100 Titles for Reading and Sharing
2006 Booklist Editors'Choice
Women's National Book Association, Judy Lopez Memorial Foundation Award

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