Wednesday, June 16, 2010

bad luck and birthmarked

The Best Bad Luck I Ever Had by Kristin Levine

It’s 1917 and twelve-year-old Dit is disappointed that his small Southern town’s new postmaster’s child is a girl. Though they are the same age, he doesn’t believe that Emma can possibly fill the spot of summer friend. He listens to his parents, though, and shows hospitality towards the prim and proper girl from Boston.

As the summer progresses, both children find that they’ve developed a strong friendship that lasts well into the school year, despite their personality differences, and the trouble that comes from their interracial friendship. Their friendship grows even stronger when they witness a terrible event and struggle to save a family friend from put to death.

A friend handed this book to me, stating that it’s Newbery worthy. I had it in my to-be-read pile already, so pulled it to the top of the pile and started to read.

The relationship between Dit and Emma is wonderfully described. They aren’t fast friends, and they encounter many bumps in the road, but through it all, they realize what true friendship is all about. Their plan to save Doc is a little far fetched, but that doesn’t take away from the story itself. Is this the next Newbery winner? Only the committee knows for sure. I think it is an excellent story of friendship and a well written slice of small town life.

Birthmarked by Caragh M. O'Brien

Just like her mother, Gaia is now a midwife. When her parents are taken away by the Enclave, Gaia is the only midwife serving their sector. Every month she passes along the sector’s quota of infants, just as her mother did before her. All the while, Gaia wonders what is happening with her parents and if they will ever return.

When the chance arrives for Gaia to slip into the Enclave and rescue her parents, she jumps on it. What happens next is a fast paced adventure of intrigue and rebellion…and even a little romance.

A wonderfully written tale of a future society, the reader can’t help but be drawn into Gaia’s life. There are unsuspected surprises around nearly every corner, and an ending that leaves the reader wanting more. Thankfully, the author is working on the next book!!

1 comment:

JV said...

I think the end seemed far-fetched, but it only worked because virtually everyone in the town wanted it to. Although I don't think anyone was fooled by the sacks of soil, they all went along with it because they knew he had been wrongly convicted by an unfair system. People turned a blind eye to the antics of the children because they hated themselves for allowing the trial to end the way it did.