The Crying Rocks (Paperback)

The Crying Rocks By Janet Taylor Lisle Cover Image
It's Complicated--Contact Us for More Information


From Newbery Honor author Janet Taylor Lisle comes a lyrical story about one girl’s discovery of her startling past—and her search to understand her complicated present.

Joelle’s height and dark skin set her apart from everyone in Marshfield. It’s no secret that she’s adopted, but where is she from? Aunt Mary Louise says she came from Chicago on a freight train, but the story doesn’t sit right with Joelle. There’s something more. She feels it.

Carlos, the quiet boy in Joelle’s Spanish class, sees it. When he tells her that she looks like a girl in the town library’s old mural of Narragansett Indians, Joelle can’t help sneaking a look. She’s surprised by a flicker of recognition. And when Carlos tells her about the Crying Rocks, where the ghosts of Narragansett children are said to cry for their lost mothers, Joelle knows she must visit them.

When they finally set out through the forest, neither she nor Carlos anticipates the power of the ancient place, or the revelations to be found there—about the pasts they’ve both buried, and the discovery of a rare kind of courage that runs deep in Joelle’s family.

About the Author

Janet Taylor Lisle’s books for young readers have received the Newbery Honor Award (Afternoon of the Elves), the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction (The Art of Keeping Cool), Holland’s Zilveren Griffel, and Italy’s Premio Andersen Award, among other honors. A graduate of Smith College and former journalist, Janet lives in Rhode Island and often draws on Rhode Island history in her work. Visit her online at

Praise For…

“[A] complex and engaging story.”
— Kirkus Reviews

“Lisle's fluidly written story fascinates.”
— Booklist

“[A] beautifully crafted story.... This lovely portrait of a strong girl facing her past and present with dignity and courage will receive a wide and enthusiastic readership.”
— School Library Journal

“Once again, Lisle…demonstrates her ability to sensitively and suspensefully unveil enigmatic characters' secrets…complex, intriguing characters.”
— Publishers Weekly

“[Lisle] skillfully weaves history, mystery and humor into a solidly entertaining story…a heartening example of the power of family love.”
— BookPage

Product Details
ISBN: 9781481479769
ISBN-10: 1481479768
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: May 16th, 2017
Pages: 208
Language: English