A few months back, someone sent me a copy of Saving Maddie by Varian Johnson (See Ari's review). I carried the book with me on my bus commute with the intent to read it over a couple of rides and lunches at work. Well when I got to work, I shared the book with a co-worker whose son is a reluctant reader. She's always looking for something for him. Without thinking, I offered the book. Later when I asked her if he liked it she told me her son started reading it but she could tell he was reading it because she wanted him to so she gave it to her niece (she wasn't happy about the girl's normal reading choices). She said her niece immediately got into the book so much so she apparently told her cousin about the story then he wanted it back. When the niece finished the book, my friend asked if her son could finish reading it. This go round he, too, became engrossed with the book staying up late to read, something my friend says never happens. When he was done with the book, his younger sister wanted to read it so he gave it to her without telling his mom he had finished. In the end my gifted, soft cover book endured a real good wearing from three teens. My co-worker felt so bad about the condition of the book, she got me a hard cover. So to Varian, I apologize for not reviewing your latest but I hope you and other readers will appreciate how well received the book was among these teens, two of whom are preacher kids.
Before summer I read Tortilla Sun by Jennifer Cervantes. I wrote about it though not a full review. Loved it. Before I went on leave I shared this book with the same co-worker mentioned above. I'm pretty sure I know what she's going to say.
Next is One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams Garcia. I love this author's work and this book is no exception. Do check out the video clip at Zetta Eliott's blog. I was twenty pages shy of finishing when I made the same mistake of sharing a book too soon. I told a friend of my daughter's how much I enjoyed it. Actually, she had come to see my daughter and while waiting she noticed the book on the hallway bookcase ( my daughter's friends often eye my books and then shyly they will sometimes ask to borrow one). I watched her her read the book titles and I knew she was going to ask. I started to say let me finish but I couldn't risk her not coming back (she's actually a regular reader and likely would ask) but I seize all opportunities to give kids books.
Last book is Elizabeti's Doll by Stephanie Stuve-Bodeen. I received this book from the publisher. It's a lovely book about a little girl who wants to emulate her mother. Her mom recently had a new baby and Elizabeti wants one to care for, too. The story takes place in Tanzania. The little girl doesn't own a doll so she searches for something to be her baby. She settles for an oval not to heavy or large rock. She takes good care of her baby. She makes the sweetest comments such as she's relieved her baby doesn't make the same mess in her cloth like her new baby brother does. Really enjoyed this. Look for it.