|My mixed-up berry blue summer|
Author: Gennari, Jennifer
June, 12, spends the summer at her Vermont home getting used to the woman her mother is planning to marry and practicing her pie-baking skills, as she hopes to win the blue ribbon at the fair.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 3.90
Points: 3.0 Quiz: 151114
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 3.30
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 58424
Common Core Standards
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Craft & Structure
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → 4.RL Integration & Knowledge of Ideas
Grade 4 → Reading → RL Literature → Texts Illustrating the Complexity, Quality, & Rang
Kirkus Reviews (-) (03/01/12)
School Library Journal (07/01/12)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (06/12)
Full Text Reviews:
Bulletin for the Center... - 06/01/2012 Twelve-year-old June Farrell has been okay with the fact that her mom, MJ, is gay, but now that MJ’s partner Eva has moved in and MJ and Eva plan to marry (thanks to Vermont’s recently passed civil union law), June has gone into a slight tailspin. Not only does Eva’s no-nonsense, take-charge personality rub June the wrong way, but the growing backlash against the civil union law is starting to hit close to home as well, as various members of June’s small community protest the law and boycott MJ’s dockside business. The local fair’s pie contest provides June with an opportunity to shine, however, and her triumph there-along with her realization that there are many folks who will step up for the law and for her family-give her the confidence and strength that she needs. Many of the characters are simplistic and one-note, and the plot is more purposive than powerful. Nonetheless, this title is a much-needed addition to the world of LGBT literature for young readers, given the relative scarcity of pre-YA novels about kids dealing with gay parents. June’s preteen voice is credible and her concerns are sensitively expressed (“That was when a line had been drawn. You were either for gay people or against them. Mom and Eva and I had looked like the players nobody wanted on their team”); kids of all stripes will relate to her feelings of being an outcast. This will obviously be useful to kids with gay parents, but plenty of kids from straight divorced families may also relate to June’s unease with Eva and with her mom’s pending marriage. JH - Copyright 2012 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Booklist - 05/15/2012 To 12-year-old June, summer means swimming in the lake, finding the first wild blueberries, and baking the best pie in the Champlain Valley Fair competition. On the other hand, she hasn’t warmed up to Eva, who plans to marry her mother, and some of their neighbors have begun protesting Vermont’s new civil union law in hurtful ways. When they post signs, hurl slurs against gays and lesbians, and boycott her mother’s small store, June finds herself drawn into the controversy. In addition to defending her family, she works through the question of her own sexual orientation that summer. June is portrayed as a sympathetic character who wants to stay on the sidelines of political issues, but, when she becomes involved, says and does all the right things, even saving a bigoted man’s young son from drowning. While this relatively short chapter book tackles too many issues and ties them up too neatly in the happy ending, the first-person narrative is quite readable, and the book will find an audience. - Copyright 2012 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 07/01/2012 Gr 4–8—Twelve-year-old June has led a carefree life with her mom in a small Vermont town on Lake Champlain. They run a small boating shop, selling supplies and homemade snacks, and June spends much of her time there or on the lake with her friend Luke. She also practices her baking in preparation for the Champlain Valley Fair pie competition. But when her mom decides to marry her girlfriend, June is suddenly faced with the harsh backlash against Vermont's civil union law that affects her family, friendships, and sense of safety. Suddenly, life is less carefree, and when people begin to boycott the shop, the future becomes uncertain. With the support of Luke, his father, and the town's librarian, June finds the courage to stand up for her family against prejudice. Although her relationship with her mom's partner is sometimes challenging, she also begins to accept the woman as a member of the family and to work with her to create a happy home life. This strong, vibrant novel looks at a complicated issue without didacticism or platitudes, but with the level of complexity it deserves, staying true to the heart of the protagonist.—Sharon McKellar, Oakland Public Library, CA - Copyright 2012 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.