Sunday, July 9, 2017
Hope is a Ferris Wheel by Robin Herrera
Fifth grader Star Mackie lives in a trailer, which was just fine back in Oregon. But here, in California where she's just moved, that is apparently not something that you tell people. According to her sister, you also shouldn't tell people that you've never met your dad or that your sister goes to an alternative school because she got kicked out of her old one. Dubbed Star Trashy by all the kids at school, she immediately finds out that fifth grade is difficult when you don't have any friends. Star is determined to overcome her early misstep, so she decides to start The Trailer Park Club to educate people on their misconceptions. Unfortunately, she's not so sure about the friendliness of her club's new members.
Star Mackie may be my new favorite literary character. She is precocious, smart, and confident. Hope is a Ferris Wheel is an excellent read. It teaches the value of empathy and compassion, of taking risks, and of knowing yourself and never being ashamed. I'm not going to lie, this book made me cry several times. I've found that children's books sometimes feel cheesy and forced, but this one really breaks the mold. I'm stunned that it hasn't garnered more attention. I would recommend this to any of my student's, but the target audience is probably fourth, fifth, and sixth-grade students.
While I try to post content warnings if I, personally, identify anything that I think is not appropriate for my students who range in age from 11-14, I recommend that all content is perused by parents to ensure that the individual and unique values of each family is upheld.
© 2017, Copyright Miriam Braud.