Hilde on the Record: Memoir of a Kid Crime Reporter

Chicago Review. Apr. 2022. 192p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781641605816.
Gr 3-7–Growing up the daughter of a famous New York City newspaper reporter was just the education Hilde Lysiak needed to follow in her father’s footsteps. Her first taste of reporting life happened when she was just four years old: a breaking story was developing and her father took her with him to capture it all. Visiting the crime scene and traversing neighborhood stores in the city for witnesses gave her an insight into the world of reporting that hooked her immediately. But it was her father’s coverage of the Sandy Hook shootings that changed their lives. He wrote a best-selling book about the shootings and was able to work as a freelance journalist and spend much more time at home. This also led to their move from New York City to Selinsgrove, PA. But the reporter bug was alive and eager as Lysiak began writing and publishing her own newspaper, the Orange Street News. At first a sweet tome about births and stray cats, the OSN was a great way for Lysiak to gain confidence in her reporting and hone her journalism skills. A local murder and Lysiak’s reporting of it was the scoop of a lifetime, and her big break. Her story went viral, making her famous, but also subjecting her to much scrutiny due to her age and gender. Her response was to stand up for herself and meet the haters head-on. Her notoriety also gave her many opportunities to showcase how creative and intuitive young people can be, ultimately emphasizing to Lysiak the importance of the press and its power of “telling the truth.” Fast-paced and action-packed, the narration will thrill young readers. Lysiak tells her own story while genuinely voicing the freedoms of the press and their importance within our constitution. As the narrative evolves, readers see a progression in Lysiak, too, gaining maturity and strength in her writing. Personal events give her purpose and courage as a reporter, but simultaneously give her the wisdom to stop and take care of herself as she steps into her own. Her writing is seamless as she transitions from very young reporter to teen. Family photos are included.
VERDICT Young readers will instantly like Lysiak and come to respect her love for the press as well as the responsibilities that come with reporting. An insightful, solid read for middle school.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing