I think all the rules about blogging tell you to pick a subject and really stick to it. Well, I’m too frazzled for such a thing. So every once in a while, I’m going to do a book review. How’s that?
The book is probably not going to be entirely relevant. I’ll probably review it somewhere between 15-100 years after it was written. Every once in a while, I’ll pull out something really sharp like, “OMG, everyone, have you guys ever heard of Harry Potter? You should tots read it.” It will probably have personal annecdotes like: “I read this on a train to CT and I spilt soup on it.” And that’s how it’ll go.
I read this book because someone told me too. Because it’s about a young woman. And family. And a journey. And I’m interested in that sort of thing.
Well, its an absolutely beautiful story. It’s about a young girl, Salamanca Tree Hiddle, who emarks on a journey to Lewiston, Idaho to find her missing mother. On the way, her eccentric grandparents urge her to tell a story. Sal tells them the story of her friend, Phoebe Winterbottom, whose family relationships allow Sal to understand a bit more about her own mother and father.
There are a lot of sad and beautiful memories, and a tremendous amount of humor as she relays Phoebe’s tale. And her own story is so subtle and hearbreaking, you can’t help but be moved.
Someone gave Sharon Creech a Newbery Medal for it. So, ya know, I’m not telling you anything completely new here. But it’s been a while since I’ve read a story for young people that explores some extremely complex emotions in a very simple and clear way. And no matter how old you are, I think you could relate to this story whether it was about a young girl trying to find her mother or a thirty-something female… That’s really difficult to do and I’m truly impressed.
There are also scenes in this novel that are so incredibly vivid and well-told, that I don’t think I’ll ever forget them. I love it when you can step away from a novel and have a picture in your head that stays with you like one of your own memories. That’s a truly amazing experience for a reader.