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Summer Reading 2021: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

Why Hilda picked A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn takes place in the early 20th century, but it could be set anywhere in the United States in present time. Written in 1943 and based on the author’s life, this story remains highly relevant today as we witness a growing population of families and individuals struggling to maintain normalcy and hope against many odds. I'm drawn to the stories we all have that at once make us unique and connected to each other. Stories that involve others but are ultimately about us individually as we experience them. Here we find a young person facing hardships with her family and demonstrating extraordinary resilience, determination and hope on her own.

Join me in reading this classic!

About A Tree Grows in Brooklyn

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
by Betty Smith


The beloved American classic about a young girl's coming-of-age at the turn of the century, Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn is a poignant and moving tale filled with compassion and cruelty, laughter and heartache, crowded with life and people and incident. The story of young, sensitive, and idealistic Francie Nolan and her bittersweet formative years in the slums of Williamsburg has enchanted and inspired millions of readers for more than sixty years. By turns overwhelming, sublime, heartbreaking, and uplifting, the daily experiences of the unforgettable Nolans are raw with honesty and tenderly threaded with family connectedness -- in a work of literary art that brilliantly captures a unique time and place as well as incredibly rich moments of universal experience. - Goodreads

About the reader

  Hilda Mendez, Library Specialist

Past picks by Hilda:

  • Book of Delights by Ross Gay