Books -- reading and writing.
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And whatever connections I can make between these chapters of my life.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

The Desperate Adventures of Zeno and Alya

just out this month.
Such a good book! 
An adventure, a talking animal story, a family who loves being a family, a parrot separated from his owner, a girl who's close to giving up, a brother who loves her, a worried mom, and a lot of appealing animal characters to lighten things up.

Two of my favorite quotes-
From Alya, upon reading The Secret Garden:

She opened the book, grateful to enter its world again. She knew she was too old to believe in magic. She wished she still could.

And Zeno, the grey parrot who speaks 127 words:

"Home! Home! Home!" he said it several more times. He was always proud to have learned a new word, particularly one as important as this.

Kirby Larson loves the book, too. Here's what she blurbed for the book:

“From the moment Zeno, the African grey parrot, strutted onto the scene, I was captivated. His sense of self— ‘Zeno wants’—is battered by uncertain freedom, inferior birds, and a devastating lack of banana-nut muffins, yet he perseveres. He believes he has this freedom thing down pat. It is not until he encounters Alya, a young girl limply falling deeper and deeper into a confinement triggered by her illness, that Zeno’s vocabulary of 127 words is increased by one of the most important of all: home. This story of Zeno, Bunny, and Alya flew straight into my heart. I will be thinking about these unlikely friends for a long, long time.”

    ––Kirby Larson Newbery Honor Winner, author of  Hattie Big Sky and Hattie Ever After

Yes, very unlikely friends. But I couldn't have said it any better. Perseverance! That's truly a lesson to take away from this little story.

 CLICK HERE for an excellent review from the Page 69 Blog

Page 69- an interesting concept:

"Open the book to page ninety-nine and read, and the quality of the whole will be revealed to you." --Ford Madox Ford

But Page 69 it doesn't do this novel justice. 

Although I've known plenty of kids who ask their librarians for a "sad book," I'm not crazy about reading books featuring sick children. I'm sure there are plenty of great ones, but if you tell me that's the main focus of a novel, I may steer clear.

But I LOVED this new middle-grade novel. 
There's so much more than a sick child to this story.

HERE'S the author's website.
With a link to purchase the book. 

(Thank you to Feiwel and Friends, publisher, for the ARC of Jane Kelley's book.)


PragmaticMom said...

That is high praise! It's on my radar now. Thanks Augusta!

Augusta Scattergood said...

Let me know what you think.
In fact, if I still have the ARC, I'll send it your way, PM!

Shannon Hitchcock said...

I sent this book to my friend, Cynthia Chapman Willis for Christmas last year.