Happy Tuesday! Guess what I get to do today?!? I get to announce that Bluerose (of the Bluerose’s Heart blog) won the giveaway copy of “The Hero’s Guide to Being an Outlaw” by Christopher Healy (Read my review HERE). Congratulations – Josie picked your name out of the hat!!! I will be emailing you to get your mailing address!
Another Day as Emily
by Eileen Spinelli
Illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff
240 pages – ages 8+
Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers on May 13, 2014
Summary- Suzy Quinn has had enough. Ever since her younger brother, Parker, got called a “hero” in the news (for calling 911 when a neighbor had “a spell”), Suzy has felt unimportant. She and her best friend, Allison, have totally different personalities. Things get even worse when Allison gets a party in a play that they both try out for, but Suzy doesn’t. Suzy feels like she is “nothing.” While taking summer classes with a theme of “The 1800s” at the local library, Suzy chooses Emily Dickinson for a report. After reading about Emily, Suzy thinks that she and Emily have a lot in common. So, she decides to live her life as Emily Dickinson did – to the exact. She changes her name to Emily Dickinson, changes her goldfish’s name from Ottilie to Carlo (Emily Dickinson’s dog), cooks, sews, and writes poems. Suzy Emily even becomes a recluse, not seeing anyone – not even her friends. But does she really want to spend another day as Emily or face all the things bothering her in her life?
What I Thought- This was another great novel-in-verse from Eileen Spinelli. The verse is in a style that I think makes the story read like a diary or journal. I like how Mrs. Spinelli writes the story so you can really understand how Suzy/Emily feels about the stuff going on in her life. I think Suzy/Emily went a bit over-the-top in handling her problems, but at least it was inventive! 😉 The problems Suzy is having is pretty much what a lot of middle school aged kids have and I think it makes the characters more realistic. I thought it was cool to learn a bit about Emily Dickinson too from the story. I’ve heard of her and read some of her poetry, but this story taught me about Emily Dickinson as a person. It was a quick read for me, but the story felt complete when I was done. I think this book is terrific for young advanced readers and middle-grade readers will enjoy reading about characters that are a lot like them. There are random black and white, small illustrations scattered in the book by Ms. Lew-Vriethoff. They are a nice addition to the story.