Sounder is the story of a young African American boy's struggle to become literate. Featuring no named characters but the titular dog, Sounder, the narrative follows a family of black sharecroppers in an indeterminate American setting some time before the 1950s. When the father of the family is imprisoned for stealing a ham, his family struggles to survive. Eventually the father returns, maimed, and both he and his faithful hunting dog pass away peacefully. The son is able to learn to read with the help of a generous teacher.

Summary of Sounder by William Armstrong

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Sounder Chapter Summaries (Free)

1SparkNotes

Review: The most popular website for book notes. SparkNotes was created by students for students, and their summaries are accessible and extremely well-written. Besides the usual plot overview, chapter summaries, and character analysis, SparkNotes differentiates itself with a section discussing themes, motifs, and symbols.

2Pink Monkey

Review: Their chapter summaries aren't as good as other providers, but PinkMonkey often has interesting insights that aren't mentioned elsewhere on the Internet. For example, they go over literary elements (like setting, conflict, and mood), compare and contrast, and symbolism/motifs. It's a good site if you want to find a unique fact or angle that other students don't know about.