The Loud Silence of Francine Green
But when outspoken, passionate Sophie Bowman transfers into Francine’s class at All Saints School for Girls, Francine finds herself thinking about things that never concerned her beforefree speech, the atom bomb, the existence of God, the way people treat each other. Eventually, Francine discovers that she not only has something to say, she is absolutely determined to say it.
Once again, Karen Cushman follows a young woman’s progress toward her true self, this time exploring the nature of friendship and the experience of growing up Catholic in an era that is both fascinating and relevant to today’s young people.
The year is 1949, and thirteen-year-old Francine Green goes to a strict Catholic school. There, the students are taught to question nothing and accept what the nuns there teach her. At first, Francine follows all the rules and stays out of trouble, but all that changes when a new girl, Sophie, shows up. Sophie is the opposite of everything Francine is, and they quickly become friends. Sophie questions authority and religion, and doesn't hesitate to voice her opinions. When Sophie is expelled from school and her father loses his job due to being accused of being a Communist, Francine must decide whether she will do what's right and stand up for her friend and form her own opinions about what is going on in the world during the 1950s.
This book does a good job of portraying the confusion and paranoia of the time period, and shows the importance of having your own voice.