Review: Raymie Nightingale by Kate DiCamillo

25937866Raymie Nightingale by Kate DiCamillo

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date:April 12th, 2016
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Point of View: 3rd Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 8+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Middle Grade, Friendship, Contemporary, Family

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BLURB:

Raymie Clarke has come to realize that everything, absolutely everything, depends on her. And she has a plan. If Raymie can win the Little Miss Central Florida Tire competition, then her father, who left town two days ago with a dental hygienist, will see Raymie’s picture in the paper and (maybe) come home. To win, not only does Raymie have to do good deeds and learn how to twirl a baton; she also has to contend with the wispy, frequently fainting Louisiana Elefante, who has a show-business background, and the fiery, stubborn Beverly Tapinski, who’s determined to sabotage the contest. But as the competition approaches, loneliness, loss, and unanswerable questions draw the three girls into an unlikely friendship — and challenge each of them to come to the rescue in unexpected ways. Continue reading

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Review: Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eagar

22453777Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eagar

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: March 8th, 2016
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 10+
Pacing: Normal
Genres & Themes: Middle Grade, Magical Realism, Contemporary, Family

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BLURB:

Things are only impossible if you stop to think about them. . . .

While her friends are spending their summers having pool parties and sleepovers, twelve-year-old Carolina — Carol — is spending hers in the middle of the New Mexico desert, helping her parents move the grandfather she’s never met into a home for people with dementia. At first, Carol avoids prickly Grandpa Serge. But as the summer wears on and the heat bears down, Carol finds herself drawn to him, fascinated by the crazy stories he tells her about a healing tree, a green-glass lake, and the bees that will bring back the rain and end a hundred years of drought. As the thin line between magic and reality starts to blur, Carol must decide for herself what is possible — and what it means to be true to her roots. Readers who dream that there’s something more out there will be enchanted by this captivating novel of family, renewal, and discovering the wonder of the world. Continue reading