Sonderbooks Book Reviews by Sondra Eklund

Sonderbooks Stand-out 2005
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*****= An all-time favorite
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****Permanent Rose

by Hilary McKay

Reviewed May 11, 2005.
Hodder Children’s Books, London, 2005.  216 pages.
Available at Sembach Library (J MCN F MCK).
Sonderbooks Stand-out 2005 (#1, Children's Fiction)

I was in an airport in London, waiting for my husband to meet me.  Of course I headed for the bookstore.  Imagine my delight when I found Permanent Rose, the next book in the series beginning with Saffy’s Angel and Indigo's Star.  When I got home, I found the book in the library ordering list for June, so I was only a couple of months ahead, but I was happy to get to read this book as soon as possible.

Permanent Rose is something of a sad book.  Eight-year-old Rose is missing Tom, who went back to America at the end of Indigo's Star.  He hasn’t called, and he hasn’t written.  They don’t have his phone number or his address.  Rose is pining away for him all summer, frustrated that in his place is the former bully David.  How can Indigo stand to be around someone who was so mean to him?

Hilary McKay is always good at presenting chaotic families.  Being from a large family myself, I was always a bit embarrassed by our chaotic way of life, but Hilary McKay takes the confusion and makes it fun.  Meanwhile Eve is painting hospital walls, Caddie’s feeling ambivalent about her diamond ring, Saffy is trying to find her real father, and Indigo is reading Le Morte d’Arthur.  Rose knows that there has got to be a way to reach Tom.  That way ends up pulling all the threads together.

I do recommend reading at least Indigo's Star before you read Permanent Rose.  But do read them!  They’ll make you smile, but that smile will have some poignancy.

Reviews of other books by Hilary McKay:
Caddy's World
Saffy's Angel
Indigo's Star
Caddy Ever After
Forever Rose

The Exiles
The Exiles at Home
The Exiles in Love
Lulu and the Duck in the Park
Lulu and the Dog from the Sea
Lulu and the Rabbit Next Door

Copyright © 2005 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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