Bud, Not BuddyBud Caldwell has had it with foster homes. By the age ten, he observes, folks don’t treat you like a little kid anymore – they’re likely to set you straight with a blow to the head. Bud lives in Flint, Michigan, and all he has left of his late mother is a suitcase with posters of the jazz musician Herman E. Calloway. Christopher Paul Curtis mixes touching moments with full humor (especially Bud’s “Rules and Things for Having a Funner Life and Making a Better Liar out of Yourself”), as Bud travels to Grand Rapids, Michigan, in search of his father.
by Christopher Paul Curtis
narrated by James Avery
Listening Library, 2006
ages 8 - 12
available on Amazon, Audible and at your local library
Set during the height of the Great Depression, Christopher Paul Curtis fills his story with details of African Americans living and surviving during these difficult times. Bud gives listeners insight into life in the Depression, from Hoovervilles to redcaps and Pullman porters.
Narrator James Avery creates a charming and sincere Bud. The cast of characters is full of variety, and the occasional jazz tune sets the mood perfectly. I particularly liked the author’s note at the end, where he shares his own family history and different jobs African Americans were able to pursue in the 1930s. This is a wonderful story for the whole family. My third and fifth grader were completely engrossed in it, and my kindergartner even enjoyed it.
We listened to a copy from our local library. If you make a purchase on Amazon using the links here, a small portion will go to Great Kid Books at no cost to you. Thank you for your support.
I'd also highly recommend The Watsons Go To Birmingham on audio - read by the wonderful Lavar Burton.