Ola Shakes It Up
(Delacorte Books for Young Readers, Jan. 12, 1998)
Moving? When Ola Benson's family leaves Roxbury in Boston to a house in the suburbs, Ola is sure her parents have made a big mistake. What on Earth are they doing in Walcott--a historic, stuck-up town where the Bensons are the only black family?True, there are a few good things about the move: Mama and Daddy have better jobs. They have a bigger house, big enough to offer a home to Lillian, a Haitian refugee. But the house is in a "cooperative community" with a million rules: No kids outside after dark. No playing in the street. No jumping in the leaves. No fun.Well, if Ola's stuck in Walcott, she'll make it a place where she can feel at home. Ola the undaunted comes up with plan after plan, including Operation Pretend I Belong Here and Operation Smile If It Kills You. Finally she hits upon the superspecial can't miss plan: Operation Shake It Up.Joanne Hyppolite celebrates community, cooperation, and family life in a warm and realistic story with an irrepressible heroine.