That dog. That cat.
Sharon Creech has done it again.
Reena and her family just moved from the land of subways, small apartments and noise to a coastal town in Maine. You know, the state whose motto is "The way life should be." I should know. My family moved from Queens to coastal Waldoboro, Maine while I was in college after summering there for 10+ years. So dear Ms. Creech--I want to sit down with you and talk Maine. Were you imagining Wiscasset? Boothbay Harbor? Pemaquid? Damariscotta? Rockland? Camden? Further north? Was Reena showing Zora at the Union Fair? Inquiring minds are dying to know...
Do you smell the lobster ("lobsta") rolls? Taste the sweet mini Maine blueberries on your tongue? Feel the cool, breeze in what we used to call "the air conditioned" state? It's going to be cold up there. This book will touch all your senses just like that.
"Sometimes I had to close my eyes to rest them from all the new everythings pouring in." What a different world Maine is from the city. I can relate. But unlike me, Reena adjusts and embraces it like a challenge. She befriends Zora, an oreo cow (black with a stripe of white going down the middle) and begins to train her with hopes of showing her in the fair, one of the new "everythings" for Reena. And while Mrs. Falala, Zora's owner, doesn't seem too kind and open at first, she surprises us all to the end.
Since I listened to this book, I missed reading the sections in verse on paper but you could easily tell where they were. I enjoyed the bouncing back from poetry to prose and observing Reena, along with her little brother Luke, and her parents, adjust so positively to their new life in Maine. The written/spoken language is succinctly sweet. I like the friends Reena makes and how she is quickly transformed into a country farmer girl, yet forgetting so innocently why cows are raised to begin with.
You may not crave a hamburger or bacon tonight, but rather a sweet blueberry pie with a sprinkle of new everythings. This is a fast read where, I promise, an hour of reading will go by like a "a blink, a flash, a wink, a flicker, a dashing gallop" and not move slowly like an "endless eternity of drips."