Author: Giff, Patricia Reilly
Judith stopped talking long ago when Mom left her in the care of beloved Aunt Cora. Going back into a regular fifth-grade classroom won't be easy, but she has her Dog and new friend who will help her through.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.00
Points: 3.0 Quiz: 184105
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 3.20
Points: 7.0 Quiz: 69355
Kirkus Reviews (-) (06/01/16)
School Library Journal (06/01/16)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (09/16)
The Hornbook (00/09/16)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 06/01/2016 Gr 4–7—Jubilee lives on an island with her aunt Cora. Jubilee hasn't spoken a word to any person since her mother dropped her off to live there when she was little. Instead, she communicates with gestures, taps, and drawings. A school psychologist diagnosed the girl with selective mutism. Jubilee has just started fifth grade when she meets Mason, a "sloppy kid who talks too much." They are paired together for a class project, and Mason does not mind that she doesn't talk. He encourages her to draw cartoons to use for their project. Amid the school project, the core of the story revolves around Jubilee longing to meet her mother and learn why she left. Jubilee thinks that in solving the mystery, she will get her speech back. When a birthday card for Aunt Cora arrives from her mother, Jubilee discovers that her mom has moved back to the mainland nearby. Giff pens an emotionally sweet, heartfelt novel of not only friendship but also longing and hope as Jubilee carves her own path. Her bond with Mason and his acceptance of her give her strength and bolster her determination to do what it takes to make her dreams come true. They share a gentle, tender bond that will have readers rooting for both of them. VERDICT A poignant tale of family, friendship, and inner courage. A wonderful addition to middle grade collections.—Erin Holt, Williamson County Public Library, Franklin, TN - Copyright 2016 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Bulletin for the Center... - 09/01/2016 Despite her selective mutism, Judith is leaving special ed for mainstream fifth grade this fall in her small school on an island off the coast of Maine. She’s worried because she’s still ostracized by her old friend, Sophie, but she’s beginning to realize that classmate Mason, who initially seems like a mean troublemaker, is actually a kind-hearted guy who could be a good friend. Her abiding concern, however, is her mother, Amber, who left Judith when she was a baby; when Judith discovers that Amber has moved back into the area, she’s determined to reunite with her mother and finally put an end to years of longing. There’s a lot of formula here, and the plot is a mixture of well-worn tropes and dramatic contrivance. However, it’s a sweetly told story with a lot of tenderness, especially between Amber and her guardian, Aunt Cora, and no real villainy; the setting, the importance of Dog the dog, and the short chapters make it an accessible read and also a promising chapter readaloud. DS - Copyright 2016 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.
Booklist - 07/01/2016 Ever since her mother dropped her off as a toddler to live with Aunt Cora, Judith hasn’t spoken a word, except to a mirror. She’s insecure at times and longs to be normal, though she feels at home with her aunt in their close-knit island community off the coast of Maine. Despite the pain she feels when her ex-friend Sophie murmurs, “Nobody wants you,” Judith begins to hope that her fifth-grade year will be better. After all, she has a rescued dog in her life, an understanding new teacher, and the possibility of a new friend. Her mother’s return precipitates a crisis that enables Judith to move forward. The author of two Newbery Honor Book novels, Giff writes with quiet precision about Judith’s world and her tentative steps toward confidence, connection, and acceptance. Adults as well as children are portrayed in a convincing, empathetic manner, whatever their flaws and quirks may be. At intervals throughout the story, cartoonlike illustrations representing Judith’s drawings illustrate her expressive first-person narrative. A rewarding chapter book. - Copyright 2016 Booklist.