Children’s Historical Verse Novel, Published January 10, 2012
Challenges: YA Historical Fiction, NetGalley Month (Jan), Debut Authors 2012
Read: January 2012, 240 pp.
I’ve known it since last night:
It’s been too long to expect them to return.
May is helping out on a neighbor’s Kansas prairie homestead—just until Christmas, says Pa. She wants to contribute, but it’s hard to be separated from her family by 15 long, unfamiliar miles. Then the unthinkable happens: May is abandoned. Trapped in a tiny snow-covered sod house, isolated from family and neighbors, May must prepare for the oncoming winter. While fighting to survive, May’s memories of her struggles with reading at school come back to haunt her. But she’s determined to find her way home again. Caroline Starr Rose’s fast-paced novel, written in beautiful and riveting verse, gives readers a strong new heroine to love.
Absolutely Gorgeous Trailer (LOVE the music):
I thoroughly enjoyed May B. and can’t wait to get my hands on a hard copy of this book because one thing with the ARC version is I think you lose the syntax and structure of each verse on the separate pages. May does not want to leave home to “help out;” she really just wants to go to school so she can become a teacher some day, but she has a hard time at school, especially in reading and hates that everyone talks to her like she’s stupid because she knows she is definitely not. I thought it very sad that for someone like May who might have struggled in school, it was thought pointless so you might as well get good at house work. When Pa drops May off at the Oblingers, she soon learns what it means to be truly alone. She makes all the meals, gets the water, scrubs the pots and stokes the fire, but what is it that Mrs. Oblinger is doing? Nothing! She just sits and stares out the window.
Then the unthinkablehappens and May is left completely alone to fend for herself on the prairie with the arrival of winter. At first, she is overjoyed to finally be free! But then the rush of freedom ends and she must prepare for the oncoming snow storms. I liked that May grew up in this story and learned to depend on her own strengths – remembering all the lessons she learned from her parents and from school. With hard work and determination, May can battle any storm. The story is very reminiscent of any Laura Ingalls Wilder tale and my favorite, Caddie Woodlawn. I know I would have devoured this book in grade school just as much as I did now!
Look for May B. by Caroline Rose Starr – January 10th.
Thanks to NetGalley and Random House Children’s Books for providing me with an e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.