Helen Frost‘s Crossing Stones consists of poems from three perspectives, each a stepping stone through the lives of teens who live in Michigan in 1917, go to war, picket for women’s rights in Washington DC and take on adult-sized responsibilities. Family and friendship become essential for survival.
Each poem has a unique footprint–Emma’s and Ollie’s are cupped sonnets, and look rounded like smooth pebbles in a river. Muriel, the main character, speaks in poems that are jagged-edged and raw, bridging the novel’s characters and history with honesty.
Above all, this is a lovely story, the perfect historical fiction poetry novel for those that neither read historical fiction, nor poetry.