Friday, November 23, 2012

Almost Home (MG)

Almost Home. Joan Bauer. 2012. Penguin. 240 pages.

 Even though this one has a dog on the cover, I knew I had to read it because it is Joan Bauer. I trust Bauer. I do. I trust her books to be good...if not great. Almost Home did not disappoint. It was a compelling read, an emotional one. For the heroine, Sugar Mae Cole, goes through some tough things. She's such a wonderful, lovable heroine. I loved the fact that writing was one of the ways she coped, loved to see her writing and sharing poetry, loved the fact that she was able to stay connected with her sixth grade teacher, Mr. Bennett, during her struggles. Since her grandfather died (loved reading her memories of him), things have not been easy for Sugar and her mom, they've been struggling with their finances for most of the year, and finally the worst happens: they lose their home. Readers don't often get to see glimpses of homeless life, of life in and out of shelters, though sometimes readers get a glimpse of life for kids in foster homes, but we get to see a bit of both in this one. (For after one last big disappointment, Sugar does end up in foster care.)

I thought the writing was amazing. I just loved it. And I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the characterization. This one is RICH in minor characters which is always a bonus. I would definitely recommend this one....even if you don't trust dog books.


Read Almost Home
  • If you enjoy children's books
  • If you enjoy coming of age stories
  • If you're looking for heroines who write creatively 
  • If you like dog books, if you don't like dog books
  • If you're looking for books about foster care 
  • If you're looking for books about friendship and making your own family

© 2012 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comments:

Kailana 6:55 PM  

Cute cover!!

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

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