Touch Blue

Cynthia Lord, Scholastic Press, $16.99 (192p) ISBN 978-0-545-03531-6
As she did in the Newbery Honor–winning Rules, Lord introduces a plucky, articulate girl from coastal Maine. When Tess's best friend's family moves away and there are no longer enough students to keep her island school open, her family is among those that offer to take in foster children to boost enrollment. Awaiting the arrival of Aaron, her teenage foster brother, Tess—an avid collector of good-luck talismans—is thrilled to find a piece of blue sea glass, since blue is especially lucky: "Touch blue and your wish will come true." Lord interlaces themes of loss, luck, superstition, family, and belonging, but at the heart of this tightly woven story is Tess's longing to help Aaron overcome his hurt and anger at having been taken from his alcoholic mother (years before) and shuffled among foster homes, and to make him feel like he's part of her close-knit family. His mother's unannounced appearance (at Tess's bold, clandestine invitation) at a talent show in which Aaron plays the trumpet adds tension and pathos to the finale of this stirring novel. Ages 9–12. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/09/2010
Release date: 08/01/2010
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 186 pages - 978-0-545-03532-3
Open Ebook - 192 pages - 978-0-545-36143-9
Prebound-Glued - 186 pages - 978-1-61383-652-1
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