Hachette Audio, 2007 (2007)
Reviewed by Lyn Seippel
fter nine-year-old David loses his mother in a freak accident, his dad takes him to live with his grandmother. Still grieving David also loses his home and friends when he is most vulnerable. His dad works out of town, leaving David's care to his grandmother. David's pain and feelings of loss turn to anger which he directs at his grandmother. Her biggest sin is that she isn't his mother. He shuts her out of his life, not telling her even the simplest things that happen.
hirteen-year-old Primrose lives in a junk van rather than share her mother's tiny house. Her mother is a fortuneteller, flakey but well-meaning, whose prediction is the same for everyone. The story begins with David and his grandmother on the way to a babyish Easter egg hunt. She's hoping he'll find friends. David knows he won't. He isn't looking for any.
e does find an unusual girl hidden under the leaves. He thinks she is dead so he tells about his mother. David later meets the girl at the library. He overlooks her deceit and Primrose overlooks his age. The two lonely children become friends, a development that David also keeps from his grandmother. Before long he is slipping out at night to meet Primrose. Without their realizing it, the relationship becomes that of a brother and sister. They constantly bicker and tease but always make up. Their bond somehow fills the losses in each of their lives.
deals with the powerful emotions of loss, fear, and friendship in Spinelli's own whimsical way. Its narrators, Cassandra Morris and Suzanne Toren, give fine performances while allowing the story to remain center stage.
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