Thursday, October 7, 2010

Finally by Wendy Mass (2010)

    I have to get this one back out on the library shelves...students are clamoring for it because many read 11 Birthdays by Mass last year.  I read Finally a few weeks ago and will be happy to share it with students-I think they will like it more than I did.  Hmm, don't get me wrong, I liked it, I just didn't love it. 

Straight from the back cover...
I'm a big wisher.  I'll wish on anything. Shooting stars, stray eyelashes, dandelion tops, coins in fountains.  Birthday candles (my own and other people's). Even when my glasses fog up.  When I was younger, the wishes used to vary.  A pony.  A best friend.  A new bike with streamers on the handles.  A baby brother or sister.  some of these even came true (not the pony).  But over the past year, every wish has been spent wishing I was 12 already, a date I've waited for my whole life and one that is only six weeks away.  Looking back, I wish I  had saved one of those wishes because, if I had, I wouldn't be stuck in this drainpipe right now.  Yes, drainpipe.

    Rory gets herself stuck while on a field trip and an elderly woman rescues her.  This has some of the same mystical, magical charm that 11 Birthdays did as well as intertwining characters.  Amanda and Leo (from 11 Birthdays) attend Rory's school, so we know we are in the same community.  Kids will love meeting up with these characters! 

    Rory has this whole list of things she wants to be able to do once she turns 12, most things her friends can already do.  The first half of the book we get a nice understanding of her family and why she wants all these things to happen.  She feels like she has the strictest parents in the universe...(she wouldn't want to come live at my house).

    On the big day, Rory has a chart ready to share with her parents and her parents are prepared to let this list of demands become reality.  Some of them are normal: she wants to babysit so she takes the beginner's Red Cross course for babysitters (I did this myself back in the day!).  She gets an IM account, a cell phone (which she loses way, way too quickly) and is interested in getting a rabbit and her ears pierced. 

    It's a lot of demands and all of it turns out hilarious.  My favorite part was the ending, which was filled with warm feelings and great resolution but the middle made me a little overwhelmed.  Kids will  love it though-especially the murderous bunny! 

Wendy Mass' website


NatalieSap said...

I can't bring myself to read 11 Birthdays (I hated Groundhog Day, so... yeah), but my kids love it too. Just got Finally a couple weeks ago, and I can't keep it on the shelves either.

Janssen said...

That's how I felt about 11 Birthdays. Liked it, didn't love it.

bermudaonion said...

I loved Finally! It brought back so many memories from when I was a kid. I bet your kids will love it.