cover image Joplin, Wishing

Joplin, Wishing

Diane Stanley. Harper, $16.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-06-242370-2

Stanley (The Chosen Prince) deftly infuses magic and mystery into this uplifting story about friendship and second chances. After the death of fifth-grader Joplin Danforth’s estranged grandfather, who was a famous author, Joplin and her mother trek from New York City to his remote cabin in Maine to salvage his final writing. There, Joplin finds a beautiful but broken antique platter. Once repaired, the platter reveals a lovely scene: a girl standing by a pond. Joplin, tired of constant ridicule by classmates, wishes for the girl in the image to be her friend, and is stunned to find Sofie sitting in her garden the next morning. Along with new friend Barrett, the children undertake the daunting task of getting Sofie back to her home—a small Dutch village 400 years in the past. Stanley’s clever premise will quickly capture the imaginations of young readers, but it’s Joplin, with her headstrong determination; Sofie, with her soft-spoken resolve; and Barrett, with his enthusiasm and logic, who make this story special, exemplifying true friendship and sacrifice. Ages 8–12. [em]Agent: Marcia Wernick, Wernick & Pratt. (June) [/em]