Georgia Rules

Nanci Turner Steveson. Harper, $16.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-06-237457-8
A 12-year-old’s attempt to learn about her recently deceased father while at odds with her conservative mother provides the framework for Steveson’s well-crafted novel. Magnolia Grace Austin, aka Maggie, inherits a farm from her late father, whom she never really knew. In order to sell the farm, Maggie and her mother must live there for one year to satisfy the terms of the will, so the summer before seventh grade, Maggie and Mama move from Atlanta to Vermont. Small-town life proves to be a big adjustment for both, and Steveson (Swing Sideways) weaves divorce, same-sex relationships, adoption, disability, PTSD, and more into the story, forcing Maggie and Mama to rethink certain attitudes while also propelling the narrative. Maggie’s developing friendships with the sprawling Parker family—made up of two mothers and biological, adopted, and foster children—become a catalyst for change in their lives. The strained relationship between Maggie and Mama is especially poignant as they try to find their way in uncharted territory. It’s an inspiring story of opening eyes and expanding perceptions. Ages 8–12. Agent: Al Zuckerman, Writers House. (May)
Reviewed on: 05/08/2017
Release date: 05/01/2017
Ebook - 272 pages - 978-0-06-237459-2
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