Thursday, April 3, 2014
Book Review: "Half a Chance" by Cynthia Lord
This is a great middle grade novel that addresses well with issues that many kids of this age group are dealing with. First, Lucy is the new kid in town. It can be very scary to be in that position, no matter how many times it has happened. She is put in a situation where there are kids her age right next door - but they have a friend who feels like competing for their attention. There is a tension there that is easily recognizable, and it is dealt with clearly and positively. Second, Lucy has an absent father. Her parents are still married, but her father leaves for long periods of time, and sometimes Lucy feels less important to him than his work. Also, she doesn't think he can really see the talents she has. The author shows how this works out in Lucy's twelve year old mind, and shows strategies for working through and communicating these feelings. Third, Lucy's only friend here in this new place is going through some family issues that are difficult to understand and difficult even for the adults to decide the best course of action. This is dealt with sensitively, and demonstrate the different ways that you can be a good friend.
And while all of these issues are worked through in this book, it doesn't feel didactic at all. It is an entertaining story, full of life and wonder and authenticity.
I will absolutely recommend this to middle readers (4th-6th grade or so) in my library looking for realistic fiction books about friendship, being the new kid, nature and photography.
Half a Chance
by Cynthia Lord
Source: Publisher for honest review
Links to Amazon:
Half a Chance