Clayton Byrd Goes Underground (US Only)

by: Rita Williams Garcia

Release Date: May 2, 2017

Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers

About the Book:

When, Cool Papa, When? That’s what Clayton Byrd is always asking his grandfather, Cool Papa Byrd. When does he get a solo to show off how well he plays the blues harp? Clayton feels most alive when he’s playing with Cool Papa Byrd and the Bluesmen, playing the music he feels in his bones.

But then the unthinkable happens. Cool Papa Byrd dies, and Clayton’s mother gives away all his instruments and forbids Clayton from playing the blues. And Clayton knows that’s no way to live.

Armed with his grandfather’s brown porkpie hat and his harmonica, he runs away from home, in search of the Bluesmen, hoping he can join them on the road. But on the journey on the New York City subway, Clayton learns some things that surprise him.

About the Author:

Rita Williams-Garcia’s Newbery Honor-winning novel, One Crazy Summer, was a winner of the Coretta Scott King Author Award, a National Book Award Finalist, the recipient of the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, and a New York Times bestseller. The two sequels, P.S. Be Eleven and Gone Crazy in Alabama were both Coretta Scott King Author Award winners and ALA Notable Children’s Books. She is also the author of six distinguished novels for young adults: Jumped, a National Book Award finalist; No Laughter Here, Every Time a Rainbow Dies (a Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book), Fast Talk on a Slow Track (all ALA Best Books for Young Adults); Blue Tights; and Like Sisters on the Homefront, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book. Rita Williams-Garcia lives in Jamaica, New York, and has two adult daughters, Stephanie and Michelle, and a son-in-law, Adam. You can visit her online at

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