Sarah's Stars

Polly Horvath. The Canning Season
Groundwood  $8.95  ISBN 0-88899-552-0  203 pg.

Reviewed by Whitney, Age 13

“I’m going where?” Ratchet gasped.
“Maine?” Ratchet cried. “Why am I going there?”
“You’re spending the summer with great-second cousins, Tilly and Penpen Menuto. You can just call them aunts. I called them Aunt Tilly and Aunt Penpen, and they always referred to me as their niece. You can be a niece, too.”

Ratchet Clark has a pretty odd life. Her mother is always dreaming about the Hunt Club, and wasting all their money buying stuff so that she will fit in there. Ratchet and her mom have Cheerios for every meal. It’s all they eat. One day, Ratchet’s mom decides that Ratchet needs to spend the summer with her great-second cousins, which she can’t even remember. Ratchet has something on her shoulder that she isn’t allowed to show anyone and she doesn’t want to. Will we ever discover what is on her shoulder? But most important, will Ratchet have fun with her Aunts and discover some family secrets, or will she die of boredom?

Polly Horvath wrote the novel, The Canning Season. Horvath has written many other children’s books including The Trolls, and Everything on a Waffle. Both books received a Boston Globe-Horn Book Award. Polly Horvath’s books are humorous. Verging on the ridiculous, but still a funny kind of comedy. So if you liked Napoleon Dynamite, or Benchwarmers, you will like her books.

The Canning Season was a funny, sad, ridiculous, and spiritual book. There were so many different emotions in this book; it was almost too hard to keep up with everyone! But it was a change. This book is different than the normal books that we read everyday. I have never read a book with the same concept, or idea as this one. That is one of the other reasons that I really liked it. ORIGINALITY!

Overall, The Canning Season was a really good book, which is why I give it 4 out of 5 stars.


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