Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I found out today that I received a starred review (my first, I believe) in Library Media Connection for My Life with the Lincolns:
This coming of age story is told through the voice of 12-year old Mina who is growing up in the challenging 1960s during the civil rights struggle and the conflict over the Vietnam War. Her father takes her to hear speeches by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and to participate in civil rights events. She is a precocious and highly intelligent Caucasian youngster who is fortunate to live history firsthand. Mina has a fantastic imagination, and she believes she is the reincarnation of one of Abraham Lincoln’s sons. Some of Mina’s thoughts are hilarious, while others are eye-opening. The story is also told through a newsletter written by Mina to promote her father’s furniture store, “Honest Abe’s,” which also provides tidbits of historical information about Lincoln and his troubled wife, Mary Todd Lincoln. One subplot involves her father’s affair with a black civil rights advocate. This is the author’s first young adult novel, but she proves her ability to capture the ways a teenager might interpret events and assign meanings to them. The intricate storylines come together and create a wonderful read for adolescents and adults. Highly Recommended. Caroline Geck, Newark (New Jersey) Public Schools
I felt a bit like a star, myself, when I spoke at a local middle school on Monday; at the end of my second presentation, one of the students asked if I would sign autographs, and when I said yes, I was mobbed. The librarian gave me a stack of blank cards from the card catalog and a purple marker that smelled like grape popsicles, and I signed my name over and over again as dozens of kids surrounded me, their hands held out, each clamoring to be next. I'm sure it's the closest I'll ever get to a taste of celebrity (and I have to say I'm grateful I won't get any closer. It was very sweet and I was touched by the enthusiasm of the kids, but I found myself also getting quite claustrophobic and overwhelmed. Talking with the kids was great, though, and I feel so lucky to have a chance to reach young readers, hopefully with words other than just my purple, sweet-smelling name.)


Donna said...

A well-deserved review. Loved the purple pen story.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

You do shine like a star, you know. Congratulations!

dmccafferty said...

The reviewer is absolutely right, Gayle! My Life With the Lincolns is a great book! I am really enjoying it.