Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.
This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection is:
By Jen K Blom
Publication: March 11th 2011 by Holiday House
from Goodreads: Eleven-year-old P (short for Princess, a name she loathes) longs for a pet, but her father insists that all animals on their Oklahoma farm must earn their keep. While he's away on combat duty in Iraq, P tries to turn his cattle dog into her pet and rescues an orphaned opossum that she names Ike. She hand-feeds him, smuggles him into school, and soon he is following her everywhere.
P knows she can't keep him forever. Can she teach Ike to survive in the wild before her father gets home and if she does, can she bear to let him go?
How could I not read this one? I mean, really! I'm from the south and in the south we have possums...not sure I'd have one for a pet, but to each his own, or in this case her own. I like that it's set in present day too, with a father serving in Iraq. There are many little girls out there that could relate to this. I'm a sucker for animal stories, like those written by Bill Wallace. (I used to read them aloud and suggest them to my students when we went to the library.) When I saw what Mr. Wallace had to say about this one, I knew I should read it. "A heartwarming, vibrant story. It's a book that middle graders will want to read." --Bill Wallace, author of A Dog Called Kitty If he likes it, I'm sure I will too.