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Author: Shofner, Corabel
When twelve-year-old Ruby's mother goes to jail, Ruby finds her Aunt Eleanor, an ornery nun with some dark secrets, who Ruby hopes will help free her mother.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 5.00
Points: 8.0 Quiz: 190293
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 4.50
Points: 12.0 Quiz: 71438
School Library Journal (00/06/17)
Booklist (+) (05/01/17)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 05/01/2017 *Starred Review* It’s not often that a book gets everything so right: characters, plot, setting, voice. It’s even rarer to find all that in a first novel. But Shofner has taken all the established, important elements of a good middle-grade novel, given them a brisk shake, and served them up to readers in way that both entertains and enlightens. It begins with sage, sassy 12-year-old Ruby Clyde Henderson, whose life has taken a tumble. Her ineffectual mother, Babe, has taken up with a loser Ruby dismissively calls the Catfish. But the Catfish proves he’s good at something—turning a fiasco into a nightmare—when a gas station robbery he stages winds up with Babe in jail and Ruby hiding out in a strange town. She knows her mother’s twin sister is nearby, but she’s an Episcopalian nun living on a peach ranch, and besides, Babe and Aunt Eleanor haven’t spoken in years. This out-of-the-box setup becomes a ring within which a set of unique characters wrestles, reversing many long-held and heartfelt beliefs along the way. Though told in Ruby’s unique voice, the book nonetheless does fine by its adult characters, especially the dyspeptic Aunt Eleanor, who both teaches and is taught, and shows her fealty to duty in a surprising twist that will leave readers with plenty to chew on. - Copyright 2017 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 06/01/2017 Gr 4–6—Twelve-year-old Ruby Clyde's father was shot and killed before she was born, and she has no use for her mother's boyfriend Catfish. When Catfish commits armed robbery and gets himself and Ruby Clyde's mother arrested, the heroine is on her own. She sets off, with only her newly acquired pig, Bunny, for company. Ruby is determined to find Paradise Ranch, a peach orchard in Texas, where her mother's estranged twin, a nun, lives. Sister Eleanor Rose has her own secrets. Plucky and wise beyond her years, Ruby relies on hope and common sense in equal measure, and her voice is the star of Shofner's debut novel. Although her mother has failed her, she has loving adults in her life who are willing to protect her, and readers will be glad to see her get her happy but hard-won ending. VERDICT A quirky and ultimately uplifting tale, perfect for fans of Kate DiCamillo and Joan Bauer.—Laurie Slagenwhite Walters, Brighton District Library, Brighton, MI - Copyright 2017 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.