Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Defining Dulcie by Paul Acampora

c2006 Fiction; Grades 7+; 168 p.
School Library Journal Starred Review: Strong and quirky characters who see life as an inextricable mix of sadness and humor, sorrow and hope, are the hallmark of this memorable first novel. When 16-year-old Dulcie's beloved dad dies, she and her mom leave her granddad in Connecticut and drive to California to start over. This doesn't work for the still-grieving Dulcie so she takes their truck and drives home to pick up the pieces of her old life and remember her father in all the old places. Her road trip and memories of it, along with events that occur once she arrives home, provide the figurative journey that begins her healing. Rather than being a sad or solemn read, however, the treatment is unexpectedly offbeat and, at times, wonderfully funny. By including details of Dulcie's interesting stops along the way, including her experiences with a field of fainting goats, Acampora demonstrates a Joan Bauer-like knack for making ordinary life worth a second look. Teens will appreciate both the warm security that surrounds Dulcie and the hard truth that life can be painful.

No comments:

Post a Comment