First Glance Truth or Dare by Barbara Dee I recently…
The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street by Karina Yan Glaser
One of The New York Times’ Notable Children’s Books of 2017: “In this delightful and heartwarming throwback to the big-family novels of yesteryear, a large biracial family might lose their beloved brownstone home, but win it back with an all-out charm offensive.”
The Vanderbeekers have always lived in the brownstone on 141st Street. It’s practically another member of the family. So when their reclusive, curmudgeonly landlord decides not to renew their lease, the five siblings have eleven days to do whatever it takes to stay in their beloved home and convince the dreaded Beiderman just how wonderful they are. And all is fair in love and war when it comes to keeping their home. –Amazon
Read my first glance thoughts here.
I am giving this book five stars because of the wonderful and captivating quality of writing. Glaser has written such a heart-warming story of family, but in such great detail that it definitely sets this book apart. The character development, the descriptions, the way you can visualize everything is so amazing. Although I guessed the ending pretty early on, I kept reading because of how good Glaser was at telling her story. She also had so much else happen along the way that even though I thought I knew the ending, I had to know what else was going to happen to this lovable family.
Because Glaser was able to make her characters come alive for me, I decided to”sort” them into Hogwarts houses. I know, I know, my inner nerd is making a huge presence, but I could not resist. This is the first time I’ve even thought to do this, so I just went with gut instincts. Do you ever sort characters into factions (Divergent), districts (Hunger Games), or houses (Harry Potter)?
Jessie-Ravenclaw (her brilliance)
Isa-Ravenclaw (musical talent) or Hufflepuff (her kind heart that aches for everyone)
Laney- Hufflepuff (her positivity and kindness)
Hyacinth- Gryffindor (her bravery)
Oliver- Slytherin (his cunning and loyalty)
I frequently reach out to authors through social media with the hopes that eventually come will like my post or *gasp* comment! Well, Glaser immediately commented to my first post with an offering of bookmarks for my students. I really am impressed with her taking the time to respond and to offer something for my students. They will be so excited to see her comment. It makes authors feel real to them, and hopefully show them how real being an author can be!
I highly recommend this book if you are looking for a feel-good book that will make your heart break and full all at once.