This year’s Newbery winner is indeed a winner. It’s the story of a young girl named Abilene, who has been “riding the rails” during the depression with her father. It is 1936 and she has been sent to stay with her father's friend in Manifest, Kansas. Abilene wants to know more about her father, including why he left her in Manifest in the first place. She'll find the truth in a box of mementos hidden in some floorboards.
Although Abilene is the main character of the book, Moon Over Manifest is just as much a story about Jinx, a 13 yr old who blew into town in 1917 and changed it forever. Jinx is working with a con man until someone is killed and they are run out of town. He ends up in Manifest, a town where mine owners and many immigrant groups are at odds with each other. When a piece of land becomes available that the mine owner needs to expand, the townspeople have to learn to work together.
Read this book to find out how Jinx devises a way to earn the money to pay for the land, how unexpected help arrives from an unlikely source, how the mementos in Abigail’s box are explained one by one, and how the last of them, a skeleton key, unlocks the deepest secret of all. (Get your tissues ready!)