“All a person needs in life is one true friend.”
So says Grandpa Thomas, the only member of Amelia’s family who cares about her one bit. That true friend finally arrives when Fancy Nelson, the first Negro kid Amelia has ever seen in person, walks into her fourth grade classroom. As Fancy’s special sort of magic rubs off on Amelia, she slowly comes to understand her trainwreck family and her place in it—and Fancy discovers a surprising secret about her own past.
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My mother tried to kill me before I was born. Even then I disappointed her.
I learned about the foundation of my life brick by brick from my daddy’s daddy, Grandpa Thomas, and from Mama. Grandpa Thomas handed me the bricks gently, adding a fib or two to make our family seem halfway normal. Mama threw the bricks at me, aiming to kill. That woman had a mean streak in her as wide as the Atlantic Ocean.
My father grew up in a flea-size town in the upper right-hand corner of New York State, just up the road from Sullivan’s Falls.
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“I loved this book, I couldn’t put it down. It was heartwarming and filled with the clarity of innoncence. A real page-turner.” —Sara Gruen, author of Water for Elephants
"The intricate storylines come together and create a wonderful read." -- Library Media Connection
"Shimko's story is original, and Amelia's distinctive voice and likable nature will have readers rooting for her in times of trouble and cheering her ultimate good fortune. The happy ending is immensely satisfying." -- Publishers Weekly
Bonnie Shimko’s previous books include Letters in the Attic (978-0897335638), which won the Lambda Literary Award for Young Adults in 2002. She lives in Plattsburgh, New York.
American Library Association Best Books for Young Adults
AR Quiz Number: 141054AR Book Level: 4.3AR Points: 5