Cover image for Cracker Jackson
Cracker Jackson
Byars, Betsy Cromer.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Puffin Books, 1986.

Physical Description:
146 pages ; 20 cm
After attempting to save his ex-babysitter from wife abuse, Cracker Jackson gains an adult insight into the sadness of failed heroics.
Reading Level:
710 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.2 4.0 215.

Reading Counts RC 3-5 5.5 6 Quiz: 02578 Guided reading level: T.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
J FICTION Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



A backlist gem from a Newbery-winning author!

Cracker Jackson has a problem. A big, serious, adult problem. When he receives an anonymous note in the mail, he finds out that his old babysitter, Alma, is in danger. Cracker's the only one who can help her. But what can an eleven-year-old do in a situation that most adults couldn't cope with? Cracker will do anything to protect his beloved Alma. But the situation is already moving beyond his control...

An ALA Notable Book
Winner of the Parents' Choice Award
An IRA-CBC Children's Choice

Author Notes

Betsy Cromer Byars was born in1928. She graduated from Queens College in Charlotte, North Carolina. While she was in graduate school, she began writing articles for The Saturday Evening Post and Look.

Byars writes novels for young people. She is an expert at tapping in to the pain of adolescence, using bits of her own experience to flavor her characters. She is author of more than 23 books and has won numerous awards. Her book about a 14-year-old girl and her mentally retarded brother, The Summer of the Swans (1970), won the Newberry Award as the most distinguished contribution to children's literature that year. Other books include The 18th Emergency (1973), The TV Kid (1976), and After the Goat Man (1995).

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

Gr. 4-6. Cracker Jackson discovers that his beloved baby-sitter, Alma, is being abused by her husband and tries his best to help her.

Table of Contents

Anonymous Lettersp. 3
Bbbrrruucckkkkp. 9
Wrong Worries, Right Worriesp. 16
From the Bushesp. 24
Fears and Leechesp. 28
The Thursday Callp. 33
Thpittingp. 39
A Friend Called Goatp. 46
Jackson and Supermanp. 53
Doing Anything Cheerfullyp. 59
Sister Rosep. 65
The Double Hurtp. 71
A Two-Pillow Drivep. 77
On the Roadp. 83
Almost to Avondalep. 90
Home Again, Home Again, Riggidy-Jigp. 96
The Hanging-Up Bluesp. 101
Three O'clock, Fourp. 107
The Accidentp. 112
That Manp. 117
Room 2002p. 122
Waiting for Whale Imitationsp. 127
On the Road Againp. 134
The Non-Anonymous Letterp. 141