|Painting the rainbow|
Author: Gordon, Amy
During Holly and Ivy's annual month-long visit at the family's New Hampshire lake house in 1965, the distance that seems to be growing between the thirteen-year-old cousins fades when they accidentally uncover hints of a family secret dating back to World War II.
Download a Teacher's Guide
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.10
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 165931
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 6-8
Reading Level: 4.60
Points: 15.0 Quiz: 63253
Common Core Standards
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Integration & Knowledge of Ideas
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Range of Reading & Level of Text Complexity
Grade 5 → Reading → RL Literature → 5.RL Craft & Structure
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Key Ideas & Details
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Craft & Structure
Grade 6 → Reading → RL Literature → 6.RL Integration of Knowledge & Ideas
Kirkus Reviews (-) (03/01/14)
School Library Journal (03/01/14)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (07/14)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 03/01/2014 Gr 5–8—In August 1965, 13-year-old cousins Holly and Ivy are once again together while their extended family gathers for the annual month-long reunion at their grandparents' summer home on Otter Lake, New Hampshire. But tensions run high as Ivy's parents constantly argue; her mother investigates boarding schools for her and her brother Sam; and her volatile father, Jake, clashes repeatedly with her eldest brother, Randy, over his views on civil rights and Vietnam. Holly is hurt and bewildered by Ivy's moodiness and withdraws into her music. Told in the girls' alternating voices, the story skillfully combines complex family dynamics, adolescent angst, and a good mystery, as clues emerge relating to the death, many years before, of Jake's twin brother, Jesse. The girls stumble upon old letters and memorabilia that reveal surprising facts about their uncle's death and its relationship to the plight of Japanese Americans during World War II. Effective integration of setting, details of the time periods, and nuances of personality enhance the plot. A family tree and a time line are provided, as well as an author's note describing her research and inspiration for this multilayered historical novel.—Marie Orlando, formerly at Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 04/15/2014 The summer of 1965 threatens to tear apart the Greenwood clan. Culture clash, the brewing war in Vietnam, and one whopper of a family secret disturb the idyllic summertime rituals the Greenwoods enjoy at their lake house in New Hampshire. Things are even rocky between usually inseparable cousins Holly and Ivy, both 13, as their differences become especially pronounced. Curious, fun-loving Holly has the strength to relentlessly seek information about beloved, deceased Uncle Jesse, whose death is so contentious that the older members of the family refuse to clarify the circumstances surrounding the incident. Meanwhile, the serious and sensitive Ivy has enough problems at home and she doesn’t want to rock the boat any further. Nevertheless, she and Holly piece together the WWII-era mystery of Jesse and his friend Kiyoshi, learning along the way about compassion and bravery. Classic storytelling, with an assist from diary-entry passages by Ivy, imbues this rich tale with life and shapes the Greenwoods into unforgettable characters sure to stick with readers. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.
Bulletin for the Center... - 07/01/2014 All their lives, cousins Ivy Greenwood and Holly Swanson have spent part of the summer with their relatives at the family lake house in New Hampshire. Now thirteen, the girls find themselves changing, with new tensions driving a wedge between them. It doesn’t help that Holly develops an unrelenting interest in their deceased uncle Jesse, the twin brother of Ivy’s explosive father, just as Ivy becomes more intent on not rocking the boat, whether around her constantly fighting parents or the extended family who keep Jesse’s life-and death-shrouded in mystery. Yet clues about him keep appearing, linking him and the Greenwoods to a Japanese college student whom the family sheltered during World War II some twenty-four years prior to the current Vietnam War era. As Holly pushes the tight-lipped adults for more information while Ivy shuts down, displaying her emotions only through her music or sporadic outbursts, the girls learn not only about their family and its secrets, but also how they can each change without losing one another. This coming-of-age story is quiet and lovely, equally evocative of the magic of summers and the pain of leaving childhood. Moving between Holly’s narration and Ivy’s diary entries, the book captures the raw emotions of navigating friendships in transition, as well as the fascination with family mysteries so typical of young adolescents. Gordon skillfully weaves in a lesson on war and politics, subtly revealing the many strong feelings and viewpoints that divide nations and families that are just as relevant today. Young readers looking for a mirror to their own evolving relationships and family dynamics will find just that in this contemplative and honest novel. AA - Copyright 2014 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.