“Al Capone Does My Shirts” by Gennifer Choldenko
Genre: Young Adult, Historical Fiction
Summary from Goodreads:
Today I moved to a twelve-acre rock covered with cement, topped with bird turd and surrounded by water. I’m not the only kid who lives here. There’s my sister, Natalie, except she doesn’t count. And there are twenty-three other kids who live on the island because their dads work as guards or cook’s or doctors or electricians for the prison, like my dad does. Plus, there are a ton of murderers, rapists, hit men, con men, stickup men, embezzlers, connivers, burglars, kidnappers and maybe even an innocent man or two, though I doubt it. The convicts we have are the kind other prisons don’t want. I never knew prisons could be picky, but I guess they can. You get to Alcatraz by being the worst of the worst. Unless you’re me. I came here because my mother said I had to.
-It was a cute story. I don’t know if it’s award winning material though.
-I wish there was more information about living on Alcatraz. That’s a really interesting idea.
-Very, very believable characters. The author’s depiction of Piper is so realistic. Piper is that kid that you get in trouble for going with her plans but she makes your life hell if you go against her. I actively hated her which I don’t do with too many characters.
-I really enjoyed the whole story of Natalie and dealing with Autism in the 1930’s.
-There’s a sequel! “Al Capone Shines My Shoes” I may have to pick it up at some point.
4/5 Recommended for a quick, easy read.