Wednesday, December 27, 2017

The Gift (Birdie Mae Hayes #1)

34138396Agee, Jeri Anne. The Gift (Birdie Mae Hayes #1)
November 7th 2017 by Sky Pony Press
E ARC from Edelweiss Plus

Birdie Mae lives in a small town in Alabama with her very young brother, Bubba (who likes to run around after stripping off his clothes, hence the cover), and her parents, who operate the only grocery store in town. She's concerned when she gets a new neighbor, but Doyle Baker seems fairly nice. When her father finds out that the Bakers are opening a new grocery store on the other side of town, though, she is worried that the family business will be negatively impacted. Not only that, but she starts to see things before they happen, like Doyle falling out of a tree. After a few more incidents like this, she talks to her parents, who send her off to spend some time with her grandma Mae, who has the same ability. Once she knows she is not imagining things, Birdie learns to deal with her new skill.
Strengths: Nice length, well illustrated, good length early chapter book. Birdie's interactions with Doyle and the children at school are realistic and well done.
Weaknesses: Birdie Mae's "gift" is presented in a way that makes it seem VERY real. Since the target demographic has a hard enough time discerning fantasy from reality, this could be both good and bad.    This is definitely a fantasy book.
What I really think: This is a bit too young for my students, and a bit too Alabama for me.

Ms. Yingling

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