Nettie Parker’s Backyard

Ask anyone who knows Nettie Parker, and they’ll say that she’s an amazing, mystical woman…what else would you call someone who receives supernatural signs sent just to them? And being able to live longer than anyone else? That alone is pretty amazing! Nettie’s been through many hardships in her life, and she’s learned first-hand that prejudice can be a multi-headed dragon. but her courage and determination show others that differences in skin color or in physical abilities don’t matter. In fact, as Nettie and her fighter-pilot husband both get caught up in World War II, survival becomes what matters most-not just for them, but also for the eight Jewish refugee children she comes to care for. Now Nettie faces her toughest struggle yet: uncovering the mystery of her supernatural signs and the purpose of her unusually long life. Do the strange statues that suddenly appear in her backyard point to any clues? Halley, Nettie’s young friend, plays detective as she re-visits Nettie’s past, a journey that takes the reader from South Carolina to England and back again. Can Halley put all the pieces together and solve the puzzle?

Nettie Parker’s Backyard is the story of a mystical, wonderful African-American Gullah woman and the supernatural signs she receives, which guide her to care for eight Jewish child refugees in WWII London. The special bonds they form are so strong, nothing can break them: neither time nor distance, proving love is the greatest force of all in a surprise twist ending. Important themes of anti-bullying and tolerance toward all, regardless of race, religion or physical challenges are woven into this historical-fiction mystery, and contains something to which every child, ages 9-13, can relate.

Bullying has become a global problem for today’s youth, and hate-crime rates continue to skyrocket. The characters in my book have little in common: they are from various countries, cultures and religious backgrounds…yet it all works! My book inspires the reader to see that what matters is the “core” of each person, and that acceptance of others and their differences truly means enriching themselves.

3 thoughts on “Nettie Parker’s Backyard”

  1. Now that school is back in session, my book makes for an impressive first book report!!!Please see my current interview at

    Remember, this is for middle-grades/ages 9-13 and is a great pleasure read, as well as some really great history lessons in African-American slavery and WWII. Timely themes of anti-bullying and tolerance toward all are woven into this mystical, magical tale of the wonderfully enchanting Nettie! Your children will love it–and so will you!!

    Thanks and enjoy,
    Cindy Smith

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