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With a horse of her own, a best friend, and a sibling on the way, Trina expects the summer after sixth grade to be her best, until she finds out about the illness that has left her father miserable and hopeless. Reprint.
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Gr. 6^-9. In a book so poignant and truthful that it's difficult to read, Franklin turns a keen eye on the subject of depression and its effects on a family. For Trina Stenkawsky, the end of sixth grade and the summer before seventh are a time of joyous blossoming and of deep sorrow. The pride of earning a coveted school prize, getting her period, and going to her first school dance is tempered by her father's increasingly strange behavior and her mother's preoccupation with her husband and the late-in-life child she carries. Time spent with her friend Miranda keeps Trina occupied, but there's no one with whom Trina feels comfortable sharing her feelings: If her mother won't talk about Dad, what gives Trina the right? Adult characters are not much more than intriguing shadow shapes, but Franklin's depiction of Trina's terror is solid and extraordinarily convincing--there's no mistaking the child's shock when she finds her father lying in the dirt, or the confusing mix of relief and guilt she feels when he goes to the hospital. The psychological underpinnings are unobtrusive, and Franklin pushes readers beyond Trina's simple recitation of events to focus on the fear and powerlessness of a child who's watching her family fall apart. But there's promise as well as pain in Trina's story: it emerges with the birth of Trina's new sister, with the father's decision not to kill himself after all, and in the exceptionally wonderful portrayal of Trina's friendship with generous, good-hearted Miranda. Stephanie ZvirinFrom School Library Journal:
Grade 6-8-Trina is 12 when her world starts to fall apart. Her 48-year-old mother is pregnant and her father, who has recently lost his job, starts sleeping a lot and getting angry for no apparent reason. Trying to distract herself, Trina becomes involved in a puppet play about the Mayas that she and a friend have created for their school's Cultural Arts Week. Yet Trina's small triumphs do not allay her confusion and dismay about her father's deteriorating behavior. The baby's birth seems to bring them all together, but soon after Trina's father tries to commit suicide; the family is finally forced to accept the fact that he is mentally ill and the possibility of long-term treatment. Although likable and sympathetic, Trina seems unrealistically naive, and her mother's determination to shield her from the truth is inconsistent with the woman's otherwise straightforward nature. The story is emotionally powerful in places, but the weak characterization and overly melodramatic events (including a school dance where Trina visibly gets her period-every girl's nightmare) make this offering merely adequate.
Cyrisse Jaffee, formerly at Newton Public Schools, MA
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Candlewick, 1998. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0763602418
Book Description Candlewick, 1998. Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0763602418
Book Description Candlewick, 1998. Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110763602418
Book Description Candlewick. PAPERBACK. Condition: New. 0763602418 New Condition. Seller Inventory # NEW7.1259243