Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Good Summer Read for Girls

I always enjoy books that experiment with new ways of telling stories.  The epistolary novel is one method that when done well is surprisingly effective.  Jennifer Holm used this method in the Middle School series and in this second book by Nance Cavanaugh she has once again brought in a unique way to tell Abigail's story.

The other nice thing about these books is that their format is especially good for readers who may feel overwhelmed by more conventional forms of storytelling.  There are so many diary format novels for boys that it is nice to see a less intimidating way to tell a story that is aimed squarely at the female set.

Don't forget to Follow One Great Book on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or by email so that you won't miss a book made up of lists and letters.  Could my "to do" lists actually be the beginning of a literary career?  Sadly they just aren't that interesting, but I do need to get strawberries on the way home.

Title: Always Abigail

Author: Nancy J. Cavanaugh

Target: Grades 5-7

Series: No

What this book is about: 
Written as a series of lists, letters and short journal entries, this book follows Abigail as she navigates middle school.  Abigail has been dreaming of making the Pom Pom squad with her two best friends.  What she has not been dreaming about is a homeroom with the toughest teacher in school, a schedule where she doesn’t have a single class with her BFFs and a writing partner who is the school outcast.  Can she make it through this year?

Why I love this book:  
I was a huge fan of Cavanaugh first book This Journal Belongs to Ratchet.  I quite enjoy her ability to tell a complete story using unconventional writing methods.  In this case she uses lots of lists and letters.  Girls will enjoy this fun way of story telling.

I liked Abigail quite a bit.  Her reactions felt real as she navigated her guilt over doing what was popular instead of the right thing.  If anything, I felt the ending was too neatly wrapped up.  She does what is right and it all works out well for her in the end … not quite authentic, but a feel good story.  I think most girls will sense it is a bit unrealistic but Abigail is so likable, they will enjoy the story none the less.

Who this book is for: 
Great book for girls who are navigating the transition into middle school.

Final thoughts: 
I always wished I had the great handwriting that is a signature of Abigail in the book.  Darn that French school my parents sent me to.  My writing looks like the chicken scrawl on a prescription pad.

To purchase this book:
Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Always, Abigail  A portion of each purchase will go back to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.

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