Confetti Girl by Diana Lopez. (Grades 4-7.)
Reviewed from ARC provided by Little, Brown.
(This is a 2009 Cybils nominee and this review reflects only my personal opinion of the book, not necessarily the opinion of the panel!)
"Apolonia 'Lina' Flores is a sock enthusiast, a volleyball player, a science lover, and a girl who's just looking for answers. Even though her house is crammed full of books (her dad's a bibliophile), she's having trouble figuring out some very big questions, like why her dad seems to care more about books than about her, why her best friend's divorced mom is obsessed with making cascarones (hollowed eggshells filled with colorful confetti), and, most of all, why her mom died last year. Like colors in a cascarone, Lina's life is a rainbow of people, interests, and unexpected changes."
That's the jacket copy since my brain is too fried to write my own summary.
I picked this one up because I had heard Diana Lopez called a "Latina Judy Blume". I couldn't agree more (and that's a compliment because Judy Blume's been one of my favorite authors since I was about nine).
Still grieving her mom, Lina's dealing with an absent father, a crush on a boy, and navigating that tricky territory of middle school. I loved all the details of Lina's Mexican-American community in Corpus Christi, Texas (and HOORAY for a book about Latino kids where race isn't an issue). Lina's got a lot to deal with, but the tone of the book is upbeat and I was regularly chuckling out loud.
I'd consider this an essential purchase that'll appeal to middle-grade girls, Latina or otherwise. I wouldn't hesitate to hand it to any fan of Just as Long as We're Together, Are You There, God, It's Me Margaret, Shug, and others of that girly-coming-of-age ilk.
Um, and the cover has really cute socks!
Total reading/blogging time: Just over 12 hours
Books read: 4
Pages read: 965