Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko was published in 2004 and is a Newbery Honor Book. I chose this book for the 48HBC mostly based on title. It just begs to be read.
This is the story about 12 year old Moose Flanagan set in 1935. Moose's family has just moved from Santa Monica to Alcatraz Island where his dad has gotten a job as a prison guard at the famed prison.
This is how Moose describes his feelings on the relocation of his family "I want to be on Alcatraz like I want poison oak on my private parts"
We learn that the actual reason for the move is for his sister Natalie who is to go to the Ester P. Marinoff School for kids with special needs.
Moose struggles with the change of schools and making new friends as well as the frustration of trying to help his parents deal with his sister's undiagnosed condition(which we, the reader immediately recognize as autism). His feelings and emotions are honest and raw. I
I really liked this story. I would recommend it to readers 12 and up.
This book is available to check out at the Salmon Public Library.