Friday, December 30, 2011

Review: May B. by Caroline Starr Rose

May B.
by Caroline Starr Rose
Release Date: January 10, 2012
Publisher: Random House Children's Books 

My Rating: 4 Stars

 I've known it since last night:
It's been too long to expect them to return.
Something's happened.

May is helping out on a neighbor's Kansas prairie homestead—just until Christmas, says Pa. She wants to contribute, but it's hard to be separated from her family by 15 long, unfamiliar miles. Then the unthinkable happens: May is abandoned. Trapped in a tiny snow-covered sod house, isolated from family and neighbors, May must prepare for the oncoming winter. While fighting to survive, May's memories of her struggles with reading at school come back to haunt her. But she's determined to find her way home again. Caroline Starr Rose's fast-paced novel, written in beautiful and riveting verse, gives readers a strong new heroine to love.

My Review:

     I enjoyed the Laura Ingles Wilder books growing up and the stories of prairie life.  There is just something intriguing about how people lived and survived long before we had all the modern conveniences of today.  I wasn’t sure what to expect from May B. since it was my first book to read that is written in verse.   With that being said, I really enjoyed the flow and pace of the book.
     Caroline does a beautiful job of painting a picture of life on the prairie.  May finds herself in a situation that she doesn’t fully understand, but trusts her parent’s decision.  When she arrives at her neighbor’s home, she is quick to realize life there will be quite different from that at home.   May is sad that this move will require her to stop her schooling though she tries to keep practicing between chores and cooking.  When the unthinkable happens, May is abandoned, left alone to fend for herself.  This presents a problem as the weather is getting colder and the fact that she is 15 miles from her family without any signs at to how to get back home.  May struggles to survive and fight her own demons that caused her to struggle in school.  As a teacher, I picked up on what may be challenging May in school and enjoyed seeing her not give up.
      May B. is an enjoyable read that offers a glimpse into a world that has long since been hidden by the modern world we live in today.  As I read this novel, I could picture several students who are reluctant to read chapter books that would enjoy not only the story, but the flow of May B.  I would recommend May B. to readers of any age.

Where you can find more about May B. and Caroline Starr Rose:
Class of 2k12

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