Emmy and the Incredible Shrinking Rat is a book that I have always meant to read. In fact, I was supposed to read it this summer since I had the arc of Emmy and the Home for Troubled Girls in my hot little hands. Well, it didn't happen, so I took a leap of faith and jumped right in to the second installment.
Emmy's life is back to normal, and she is trying to distance herself from the rodents. Afterall, who is going to want to hang out with a girl who talks to rats? She knows that it is thanks to the rats that she is back home and away from her awful Nanny Miss Barmy who was only interested in making off with her parent's money. But, Emmy wants to do regular 10-year-old things...things like sleep-overs, parties, going to the park, and make new friends. So when Emmy and best friend Joe are invited to a reception in Rat City, she isn't as happy as she could be.
First of all, she has to get bitten by a rat to shrink down to fit in Rat City. And there is the nasty business of old Miss Barmy being a rat herself now. Unlike Emmy, however, she cannot change her form back to human. What if Emmy runs into Miss Barmy? What will happen?
Now, Emmy isn't the only girl who Miss Barmy took care of. There was Priscilla, Ana, Berit, Lisa, Lee and little Merry. In Miss Barmy's care, they disappeared and their parents mysteriously died. But where are the girls? Closer than you may think.
Before Emmy knows it, she is smack dab in the middle of a mystery and a rescue mission. Lynne Jonell has done the difficult deed of making a second book comfortable to dive into. While I feel like I probably do not know Emmy as well as I would if I had read the first installment, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Readers will feel Emmy's growing pains, and the scenery of Rat City is painted in rich detail. From friendship to nail-biting rescue missions, to a hilarious gopher named Gus, adventure loving kids will not only eat this title up, but will most likely take a second look the next time they see a squirrel in the park!
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Blog: Welcome to my Tweendom (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: arc 9/08, Henry Holt and Company, rodents, Friendship, fantasy, soccer, kidnapping, wishes, Add a tag
Blog: Booktopia (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: Friendship, Historical fiction, power, Boarding School, Atlanta, Supernatural, arc 9/08, counter culture, Abrams, KKK, Add a tag
It's 1969 Atlanta, and Bliss Inthemorningdew (yes that is her name) has just been dropped off by her hippie parents at her grandmother's place. Her folks have just left the commune and are heading to Canada, and Bliss' world is about to change.
Her grandmother is a true Southern lady, and quickly enrolls Bliss in the tony Crestview private school. Bliss is excited about actually going to a real school, but she is keeping her friend from the commune Flying V's warning about mean girls in the back of her mind. (Flying V has a gift of sight, and Bliss has a bit of it herself).
Bliss is thrown for a loop when her peer mentor Sarah Lynn ditches her. Luckily Thelma has decided to take Bliss under her wing and she and friends Jolene and Deedee school Bliss in the ways of not only Crestview, but life in Atlanta off the commune.
Unfortunately, when Flying V's warning seems to come into play, and Bliss witnesses some cruelty between classmates, Bliss ends up befriending Sandy. Sandy who the other kids make fun of because she's clumsy, she smells, and well, she's Sandy.
But Bliss feels good about being friends with Sandy. At first. They talk about conformity, power and the Manson Family murder trial. But Sandy is really needy, and it's draining spending time with her. Bliss would rather be with Thelma, Deedee and Jolene, not to mention super cute Mitchell.
What will happen when Sandy gets mixed up in a quest for power that involves the supernatural? Can Bliss disentangle herself from this girl who is set on revenge?
Lauren Myracle has written a thrilling page turner reminiscent of Nixon and Duncan. It's perfectly paced and will keep readers wanting more. Chapters are interspersed with journal pages which are border line terrifying when one thinks about the implications of animal torture and the dark arts.
Bliss is not only a scary thriller. The setting of late 1960s Atlanta allows for some frank discussions of race and the nature of racism. From the token black student at Crestview, to the Klan daddies, to teachers feeling free to use the "N" word in their classrooms, Bliss will have readers chewing on some big ideas as well.
Blog: Welcome to my Tweendom (Login to Add to MyJacketFlap)
JacketFlap tags: growing pains, lightning, Walker Books, Friendship, summer, Southern, arc 9/08, Add a tag
Aaah, a story set in the south read on a hundred degree day. The weather certainly got me in the mood for this one!
Violet Raines is sitting in church, pretty much minding her own business, when in walks the Gold family. They are late, and there is a bit of a buzz. There aren't usually strangers walking through church! Violet's best friend Lottie shoves a note in her hands reading "Don't you think she's pretty? She looks like a model! I wonder how old she is! Let's try to meet her after church!" (arc p.4). So it begins.
Melissa is quite glamorous. She does come from Detroit - the murder capital- after all. Lottie is quite drawn to Melissa and her interest in soap operas, make-up and celebrities. Violet's not quite ready for all of these girlie changes. She still likes hunting down the cups to get free brain freezes, squeezing into the tree cave, and hanging around with Eddie.
When lightning hits Lottie's house, she and her sisters need to find a place to stay. Violet wants her in her house, but Mrs. Gold who has a big house and doesn't have to go to work everyday, insists that Lottie and her sisters stay with them. Violet's heart is fit to break as she tries to navigate what it is to be eleven and not quite ready to move out of being a kid.
Danette Haworth has written a delightful story filled with memorable characters. The push and pull of a friendship between three girls rings so true, as does the subtle shift in the relationship between Eddie and Violet. There is an innocence to the story, but the situation is so universal. Violet is the kind of girl who will stay in your memory for quite some time.