cover image The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate

The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate

Jacqueline Kelly. Holt, $16.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-8050-9744-3

Six years after debuting in Kelly’s Newbery Honor–winning The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, the budding Texas scientist returns, as curious and charming as ever, and now preoccupied with fauna instead of flora. Travis, one of Callie’s six brothers, continually needs her help because of his bad choices in pets (armadillo, blue jay, raccoon, etc.). Callie’s training under the tutelage of her gruff, beloved grandfather continues with increasingly complex dissections. Meanwhile, the devastating 1900 Galveston hurricane sends refugees to Fentress that include an injured veterinarian, who finds an eager assistant in 13-year-old Callie, despite his reservations about a young lady working in an often gruesome field. Undeterred, Callie finds her passion at precisely the same moment she realizes how unfairly the deck is stacked against girls of her era. But if anybody can figure a way around studying the domestic arts, it’s whip-smart Callie, literary cousin to Alan Bradley’s Flavia de Luce, and just as sharp an observer. Happily, the episodic narrative leaves the door wide open for further adventures—if we’re lucky. Ages 9–12. Agent: Marcy Posner, Folio Literary Management. (July)