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Author: Ray, Delia
Angry with her mother, twelve-year-old runaway Ren finds an unusual boarding house in a nearby ghost town, Fortune, where she meets some interesting people and learns of a forgotten treasure from when the town was famous for buttons made of Mississippi River shells.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.10
Points: 9.0 Quiz: 184063
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 5.30
Points: 14.0 Quiz: 71129
Kirkus Reviews (09/01/15)
School Library Journal (07/01/15)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/12/15)
The Hornbook (00/11/15)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 07/01/2015 Gr 4–6—Like the small town of Fortune, Mississippi, once the "Pearl Capital of the World," Ren feels that her little family it slowly breaking apart. With her father fighting in Afghanistan, Ren's mother is moving on with her life and is dating a "creep" named Rick Littleton. Ren has had enough and decides to run away. The 12-year-old makes her way to the neighboring town, where she discovers an old school that's been turned into a boardinghouse-and a mystery. The owner, Ms. Baxter is convinced that a treasure-a bag of pearls-is hidden somewhere in the house. With her new friend Hugh, Ren sets out to help Ms. Baxter find the long lost treasure. Ren is a good kid with a kind heart. Ray's characters are realistic and relatable. VERDICT A heartwarming story about forgiveness, acceptance, and friendship.—H. Islam, Brooklyn Public Library - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 11/15/2015 When 12-year-old Ren runs away, she lands just one town over in Fortune, Iowa, a ghost town along the Mississippi River—or more specifically, in an abandoned school now used as a boarding house. There she meets proprietor Hildy Baxter, old Mayor Joy and donkey Wayne, and eight-year-old Hugh, who just loves a good mystery. Subsequently balancing the boarding house’s secrets and treasures and a homelife troubled by a deployed dad and a mom uncertain about her marital future, Ren proves herself to be a resourceful, thoughtful, sensitive child who desperately wants her family back the way she remembers it. Hildy, meanwhile, plans to open a museum celebrating the pearl button industry that once was the lifeblood of many riverside Iowa towns. Ray gives her characters strong ties to Fortune’s past and a compassionate kinship that reinforces the idea that friends are the family you choose. A delightful choice for a classroom read-aloud or for young readers who prefer their history with a mysterious twist. Back matter includes pearl button industry history and photographs. - Copyright 2015 Booklist.