Friday, October 30, 2009

Dancing through the snow by Jean Little

Of course, you did not expect me to neglect Jean Little's newest novel? Even amidst Cybils reading, Goosebumps parties, and exciting colds. Jean Little's pervading theme is hope and tenacity; her protagonists are stubborn try-try-againers and there's always hope that they will have a family, friends, and success in their struggles.

Dancing Through the Snow is no exception. Litterbin Min, as a mean bully at school labels her, knows she's a throwaway. She doesn't know who her parents were, the woman who raised her abandoned her, and every foster family has given her back. And now she's being dumped back at Children's Aid again, only a few weeks before Christmas. But this time, it's different. Jess Hart, the doctor who's been in and out of Min's life since she was small, happens to be passing and suddenly Min is scooped up and plunked down in a loving home for the holidays. Jess, who had an even more traumatic childhood than Min, is the first person who really understands; and she breaks Min's hard shell and opens her heart. Experiencing the healing power of love Min begins to learn to give back; to an abused and damaged stray puppy, to Jess's godson, and to her new friends at school. A new life, a new family, and a new Min: it's the perfect Christmas miracle.

Verdict: A story of hope and new beginnings, perfect for middle grade readers who like realistic fiction or for a family read-aloud.

ISBN: 978-1935279150; Published June 2009 by Kane Miller; Borrowed from the library; Purchased for the library; Added to my personal wishlist

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