Saturday, January 14, 2012

Junonia by Kevin Henkes

 Genre: Middle Grade Contemporary
Source: Library
Series: No, Standalone
Buy It: The Book Depository

Challenge: Free Reads

Returning to the beach cottage—a cottage named Scallop—where she has always celebrated her birthday is a special occasion for Alice Rice.
Who will see the first dolphin this time? The first pelican? What will have changed? Stayed the same? And will this be the year she finally finds a junonia shell?
Alice's friends are all returning, too. And she's certain her parents have the best party planned for her. Alice can't wait. If Alice is lucky, everything will be absolutely perfect. Will Alice be lucky?
     I heard about this book a while ago when it came out and thought it seemed really cute.  I saw it at the library recently and decided to pick it up as a quick read.  I didn't really know what to expect so I just started reading!  The book was adorable!
     Junonia by Kevin Henkes is an adorable story told from the point of view of 9/10 year old Alice.  I absolutely adored her character!  She was childish and naive but, I loved it!  I loved her voice in the book and seeing her view of everything.  I also think that the illustration on the cover is the perfect portrayal of Alice!  Every chapter heading also had an illustration that summed up what happened in the chapter.  I really loved those!  Anyway, I loved almost all of the characters in this book!  Mallory was really cute and despite her tantrums, she was a very interesting and dynamic character.  I also loved Kate, Pam, and Alice's dad ( I can't remember his name, sorry!).  
     The plot of the book was very simple but, sweet, too!  I loved how Alice was such and innocent girl with simple desires.  All she wanted was to have a nice tenth birthday and find a Junonia shell!  Kevin Henkes writing is a hidden gem!  Not many people know about this book but, you should definitely check it out if you get the chance!  It will only take you a short time to read and is under 200 pages!  The writing is also really light!  Actually, I can't think of anything I didn't like about the book!
     The scenery and imagery in this book was also beautiful.  It's a great summer read because of all the beach scenes.  I actually liked reading it during winter, though!  It made me feel like it was summer!
     Another reason I really enjoyed this book is that it was very relatable.  I've actually been to Sanibel Island, where the book takes place.  I was able to connect with Alice because I could recall how beautiful the island is!  I included a little picture on the right since many have never been there!  I also think Alice was very relatable because of her imagination.  I mean, everyone was 10 once! :)  
     Junonia by Kevin Henkes is a beachy breath of fresh air!  Alice was a beautiful and dynamic character!  Although little known, this book was adorably written and worth reading!  
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