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The Gypsies Never Came

The Gypsies Never Came

Photographer: Peter Liepke
For Ages: 8 - 12
He holds his hand up to her face. "Celebrate this? I hate this. I hate this every day."

"You don't mean that," Lydie protests. "When the Gypsies come, you'll understand."

"Don't you get it, Lydie? They never come for gimps like me."


For a small town, Warsaw Junction has a lot of secrets. Who could guess that Augie Knapp, the kid who hides his deformed hand in a glove, has collected most of them...and hides them in an old suitcase?

No one even suspects Augie has a secret of his own until Lydie Rose Meisenheimer blows into town and signs up for sixth grade. Driving a broken-down convertible, wearing a black straw hat, and proclaiming herself Augie's new best friend, she turns his days into embarrassing nightmares.

But she also fills his nights with bright-shining visions of Gypsies -- Gypsies who could make Augie's dreams come true...if only he'd dare to dream a little harder.

The Gypsies Never Came is a bold departure for well-known author Stephen Roos. It's the story of a boy who wants to belong, a story that will make you laugh, break your heart, and change the way you look at the world.
Choose a format:
  • Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers | 
  • 128 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442429406 | 
  • December 2010 | 
  • Grades 3 - 7
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

It's early. The sun is barely clearing the eastern ridge.

Augie Knapp stands under the leafless oak in the Warnkes' backyard. There's still snow on the ground, but he's wearing an undershirt and cutoffs, like it's the middle of July.

On his left hand is a flesh-colored glove. The other hand is bare.

"Kyle? You awake yet?"

Like anyone could sleep through Augie's frogular croak. "Kyle! Come look!"

Finally, a light goes on upstairs.

The window flies open. A head leans out. "What the heck are you doing, Augie?"

"Freezing my buns off." Augie laughs. "What's it look like I'm... see more

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