Thursday, February 19, 2009


Bloomability by Sharon Creech

Synopsis from author's website
Thirteen-year-old Domenica Santolina Doone (better known as Dinnie) is whisked away from her family ("kidnapped," as she refers to it) and taken to a boarding school in Switzerland by her Uncle Max and Aunt Sandy. Although she does not want to be in Switzerland and does not want to be away from her family, she gradually comes to love this new place with its people who've come from all over the world.

I have really mixed feelings about this book. Some of my very best friends have told me how much they loved this book so I was going in to it with very high expectations and while I really enjoyed it I would not put this on my list of favorite books. And then I realized that if I had read it when I was 13 I would have loved it and it would be on my list of favorites.

Dinnie doesn't have it easy; her father moves the family often in search of "an opportunity," her brother is constantly in trouble and her sister ends up pregnant. All of these things combine to allow Dinnie to go with her mother's family to Switzerland for her own opportunity. While the book lacks any real plot there is a story there. Her dream journal entries, letters from home and her observations about people at school give the book a real life feel without a structured plot. It also felt really genuine because these are kids dealing with real issues faced by 13-year-olds but they handle them with the innocence of kids that age.

I think Creech did something really unique with this text and I wish I had read it when I was younger. I recommend you give it to any 13-year-old girl you know.

Favorite quote: "What you said sounded more Italian if you sliced the air with your hands as you were saying it. Your whole body could help the words - the flip of your hands, the jerk of your head, the crossing of your legs."

*edited to add - it just seemed to fit*
"There is no reason why the same man should like the same books at eighteen and at forty-eight." ABC of Reading - Ezra Pound


Anna said...

It's hard when you start a book with such high expectations. I have that problem when I read kid's books with my daughter some times. She'll really love a book, and I don't understand why. Then I remind myself that she's 8 and I probably would love it too if I was her age.

Diary of an Eccentric

Eva said...

I just read this one as well, and I agree. If I had read it when I was a lot younger (I'm 22 now), I would have loved it. But nowadays, I just expect more-I'm too spoiled by incredible YA books. :D

Still..doesn't it make you want to move to Switzerland?!

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