Middle school students have reading interests that run the gamut from Diary of a Wimpy Kid to Twilight. Sometimes as a parent it is hard to know what is age appropriate for your child. Through this blog, I will try to help parents make informed decisions about what is available in our library. I am hoping that this blog will be a resource for our parents, and that we can all work together to make our students life-long readers!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Defining Dulcie

Defining Dulcie
by Paul Acampora
From the publisher:
"From a debut author comes a story of finding oneself in a place all too familiar. After Dulcie Morrigan Jones's dad dies, her mom decides they need to find a new life in California. But Dulcie doesn't understand what?s wrong with her old life back in Newbury, Connecticut. So she heads across country and back home in her father's red 1968 Chevy pickup truck. When she arrives, she meets Roxanne, a girl whose home life makes Dulcie see that her own situation may not be all that bad after all. And as the summer comes to an end, Dulcie realizes that maybe it's necessary to leave a place in order to come back and find out who you really are."

First off, I didn't realize this was Paul Acampora's first book when I read it.  I had read and loved I Kill the Mockingbird , so I wanted to read some more by this author.  I enjoyed this little book. It was a quick, sweet read. The ending wasn't quite what I was wanting, but overall I liked the book. What I love about Paul Acampora are the little bits of wisdom he puts all over the place in his books. Here was one of my favorites:

"For the first time since Dad died, I felt a bright stab of unexpected happiness. Maybe it was the laughter. Maybe it was the fact that I was worried about somebody other than myself for a change."

I love that! When my kids left home to go to college and they would call and be sad or depressed or homesick, I would tell them to go out and find someone to serve. That always takes you out of yourself and helps you to see your own problems with another perspective. I love how this author puts little tidbits like that in his books, and I hope that the kids who read these books pick up on some of those things. So even though I didn't love this book quite like I loved I Kill the Mockingbird , I definitely recommend it as a good story with a good moral.

Areas of concern:
I don't remember any bad language. 
A teenager takes her mother's (well, her dead father's) truck and drives across country from California to Connecticut.  She won't call her mother and just sends her postcards every now and then from random places along the road. 

Suggested Ages:
School Library Journal - Grades 7-10

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