Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Book Review of Tracing Stars.

Tracing Stars

Tracing Stars by Erin E. MoultonMy rating: 5 of 5 stars

       Pa says when you're upset, you just have to look out at the ocean and breathe with the waves.  In and out.  In and out.

Erin Moulton's second novel is filled with pearls of wisdom, culinary morsels, self-improvement plans, and second chances all wrapped up in the heady promise of a summer vacation along the Maine coast.

Indie Lee Chickory, self-proclaimed fish freak, and her 1 in 30 million Golden Lobster Monty, are the central characters in Moulton's story.  This is just the kind of character - and just the kind of book - I imagine a Richard Louv (The Last Child in the Woods) would approve of.  Indie is a girl, just out of the 5th grade, who spends a lot of time outside and has the knowledge to back it up.  She's a spunky fish face making, star gazing, shooting star wishing kind of kid, though not immune to feelings of self-doubt and impulsiveness.  Her journey will interest her young readers.  Can she stay true to herself?  Do we deserve second-chances?  Are shooting stars just the stuff of science .... or magic?

This book is ripe with ideas for projects.  Have students learn about a constellation and make a good luck charm of it.  Research a superstition.  Start an observation journal.  Respond to a writing prompt: "What do you wish for?" (p.140)  Make a recipe book from foods featured in Tracing Stars: lobster bisque, lemon ginger tea, garlic ginger mussels, clam chowder, and more. 

Erin Moulton will be visiting the Mad River Valley on July 28th as part of the Valley Libraries Summer Reading Program.  She'll be at the Joslin Library in Waitsfield, VT on the 28th at 2:00.  She'll speak about her work, including her debut novel Flutter

For more about this promising new author, please visit her website - http://www.erinemoulton.com/

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