The Glory Field Book Poster Image

The Glory Field



Stunning saga of an African-American family.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

This is a stunning portrait of the progress of black Americans, as courageous teens escape slavery and combat prejudice and, later, drug addiction.

Positive role models

Numerous prejudiced whites are depicted, but others take part in the civil rights movement.


A description of a slave whipping and beating. A white boy is severely beaten for joining a civil rights march.

Not applicable

Slaveholders and prejudiced whites use the "N" word.

Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is a stunning portrait of the progress of black Americans, as courageous teenagers escape slavery and combat prejudice and, later, drug addiction. The family's close ties give its members strength. Each simple but compelling story makes characters come alive and keeps readers involved. Although the book is long, it's divided into stories, making it easy to read.

What's the story?

This captivating saga of one black family takes readers on a journey from slavery to modern times. The book features teenagers from five generations, each undergoing a crisis that leads them to maturity. The collection of stories is compelling. Together they present a dynamic portrait of the progress of black people in the United States. A riveting, important book for all Americans.

In 1753, ten-year-old Muhammad is chained in the hold of a slave ship. In 1864 thirteen-year-old Lizzie escapes from slavery. After the war the family receives the Glory Field as their own farm. In 1900, they struggle to pay their taxes, and fifteen-year-old Elijah earns the money by saving a blind white boy. In 1930, his sixteen-year old daughter, Luvenia, is fired from her job in Chicago but decides to start her own business.

Back in South Carolina in 1964, sixteen-year-old Tommy, who has a chance to become the first black to enroll in the local state college, loses the opportunity when he stages a demonstration for civil rights. In 1994, Luvenia gives money to Malcolm to attend the family reunion, but Malcolm has difficulty trying to travel with his crack-addicted cousin, Shep. In South Carolina, Malcolm helps bring in the last crop from the Glory Field and learns his family's history.

Is it any good?


THE GLORY FIELD weaves together five stories to tell the powerful tale of a strong family living on the land that their slave ancestors had worked and came to own. Each story keeps readers involved, from Lizzie's exciting escape from slavery and Elijah's battle against a storm to Malcolm's trip from New York to South Carolina with his drug-addicted cousin.

The book introduces a wide range of characters and attitudes. While many incidents of white prejudice occur, Walter Dean Myers also presents whites who want justice for their black neighbors. Readers discover the fates of later generations of teenage characters as the stories progress. Tommy dies in Vietnam, and Luvenia becomes a wealthy businesswoman. The strong, capable Lewis family endures with Malcolm as its future.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about family history and obligation.

  • How does the larger family influence the individual character's decisions?

  • Does your family have a valued, shared possession -- land, an object, a story -- like the Glory Field?

Book details

Author:Walter Dean Myers
Genre:Family Life
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Scholastic Inc.
Publication date:January 1, 1994
Number of pages:375

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Teen, 15 years old Written byKimmybee April 9, 2008


It inspired me to be grateful that I don’t live in earlier times when life was harder. The book made me aware of the things that families and generations before me had to go through. If you have not read this book I think that you should read it now and in its entirety to get the full effect. The Glory Field is a fantastic book that tells the story of the Lewis family from1753 to 1994, that is 241 years in one book. There are no excuses this book needs to be read and I just don’t know how else to say it.
Teen, 13 years old Written byunknowndude1998 January 30, 2012


Don't read this book it not a god book!
What other families should know
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Teen, 13 years old Written byyannacocoa November 3, 2011

Black information

i think it is good to inform other black families to know about some of the hard things our past life went through. It kind of is like roots but this book is less harsh but the same information.
What other families should know
Educational value


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