Clayton Byrd Goes Underground


Author: Rita Williams-Garcia

Clayton Byrd feels most alive when he’s playing the blues on his “blues harp,” or harmonica, with his grandfather Cool Papa Byrd and the Bluesmen. But then the unthinkable happens: Cool Papa Byrd dies, and Clayton’s mother gives away all his instruments and forbids Clayton from playing the blues. And Clayton knows that’s no way to live.

Armed with his grandfather’s brown porkpie hat and his blues harp, he runs away from home in search of the Bluesmen, hoping he can join them on the road. But on the underground journey, Clayton learns about himself, his family, and what it takes to play the blues.

A powerful and heartfelt middle grade novel about loss, family, and love, from beloved Newbery Honor author and three-time Coretta Scott King Award winner Rita Williams-Garcia.