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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Walk Two Moons

Just a few weeks ago, author Sharon Creech, commented on my blog in response to my review of her recent novel, The Unfinished Angel. To say that I was thrilled was an understatement. Authors to me are like rock stars to many of you! As soon as I read the comment, I screamed for the only audience I had - my 16-year-old and 19-year-old sons – to come read this. I couldn’t wait to get back to school to share this with my students. My sons and my students thought it was awesome. Consequently, my student Book Talk Club is reading her Newbery Medal (1995) winning book, Walk Two Moons, and will meet this Wednesday to discuss it. What a gift this sequence of events has been. This was my first time to read it…it is now on my top ten favorite books of all-time. At the beginning of the story, Sal (short for Salamanca) reflects on the day she and her father moved from their beloved country farm to a city in Ohio. She reluctantly meets her father’s lady friend, Mrs. Cadaver, and sees a girl’s face peering out of a window in the house next door. She would later meet and become close friends with the girl named Phoebe. Mysterious notes are showing up on Phoebe’s doorsteps. Shortly after the notes appear, Phoebe’s mom leaves her family with very little explanation. Could Mrs. Cadaver (the name says it all) have something to do with Phoebe’s mom’s disappearance? Sal doubts Phoebe’s mom will come back; after all, her mom hasn’t. Time has passed…Sal is going on a trip with her entertaining grandparents (on her father’s side) driving many miles to see her mother. She is determined that they get to their destination by her mother’s birthday – it is her last hope. Sal’s mother left her and her father when they lived in the country to sort things out. As they begin traveling, Sal tells her grandparents Phoebe’s story which intertwines with her story and her grandparents’ story. The three face numerous obstacles along the way – reliving someone else’s experiences. I don’t want to spoil anything for you if you haven’t read this, so I will just say that this is storytelling at its best. When you finish this book, you will treasure your relationships even more and you will listen to the stories of others a little more closely. I would recommend this to teachers looking for a class novel.

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