Thursday, November 21, 2019

Safe Harbour

Kilbourne, Christina. Safe Harbour
November 16th 2019 by Dundurn
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

Harbour's father has sent her to Toronto to wait for him while he ties up some loose ends in Florida. The pair have been living on their boat since the violent death of Harbour's mother, and recently her father has refused to leave the boat, having Harbour do all of his errands on land. Now, she is living on crackers and canned tuna while living in a tent with her dog, Tuff. Her father has also warned her that the government is out to get the two of them, so she is wary of everyone. There are some people who are helpful, including a librarian who helps her get a card, and another girl on the streets, Lise, who usually stays at a shelter for teens. The two enjoy hanging out, and Lise is helpful when Harbour's credit card is declined and she no longer is able to pay for food. As winter approaches, the cold becomes more intense, but Harbour is bound and determined to wait for her father. When circumstances indicate that he will probably not make it, she finds some support from an unexpected source and learns some secrets about her past.
Strengths: This hit the sweet spot for problem novels for my students. Harbour's situation is dire, but she is determined to make the best of it, and this has a good dose of adventure in it, with a little danger as well. The inclusion of a dog always helps. The friendship between Harbour and Lise is a supportive one, and the ending is happy without being sappy. Enjoyed the Boxcar Children vibe of this very much.
Weaknesses: This is only available in paperback or e copy. Drat.
What I really think: I'll have to stick with Pyron's Stay for a similar story for my students, but I would definitely buy this if it were available in a hard cover or prebind.

Ms. Yingling

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