ZORA & ME: THE SUMMONER, by Victoria Bond, Candlewick Press

In the finale to the acclaimed trilogy, upheaval in Zora Neale Hurston’s family and hometown persuade her to leave childhood behind and find her destiny beyond Eatonville.

For Carrie and her best friend, Zora, Eatonville–America’s first incorporated Black township–has been an idyllic place to live out their childhoods. But when a lynch mob crosses the town’s border to pursue a fugitive and a grave robbery resuscitates the ugly sins of the past, the safe ground beneath them seems to shift. Not only has Zora’s own father–the showboating preacher John Hurston–decided to run against the town’s trusted mayor, but there are other unsettling things afoot, including a heartbreaking family loss, a friend’s sudden illness, and the suggestion of voodoo and zombie-ism in the air, which a curious and grieving Zora becomes all too willing to entertain.

In this fictionalized tale, award-winning author Victoria Bond explores the end of childhood and the bittersweet goodbye to Eatonville by preeminent author Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960). In so doing, she brings to a satisfying conclusion the story begun in the award-winning Zora and Me and its sequel, Zora and Me: The Cursed Ground, sparking inquisitive readers to explore Hurston’s own seminal work.

Out October 2020

256 Pages


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

This is the last of a biographical middle-grade trilogy which is shaped around Zora Neale Hurston’s life in the first incorporated black township in America–Eatonville. This author successfully incorporates parts of Hurston’s life into her fictional story. Stories based on fact are even more intriguing because as a reader, the prose is true life-like and gives you moments of pause and strong impact. There are some shocking moments that middle-graders may struggle with. The setting is well-written as is the character development. As a conclusion to a trilogy, every detail is wrapped up neatly and the ending is perfectly executed.

This author is very talented and I look forward to seeing what she takes on next.

I gave it:

Five star rating – shiny golden stars

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