________________ CM . . . . Volume XVI Number 22 . . . . February 12, 2010

cover

Struck! (Orca Currents).

Deb Loughead.
Victoria, BC: Orca, 2009.
100 pp., pbk. & hc, $9.95 (pbk.), $16.95 (hc.).
ISBN 978-1-55469-211-8 (pbk.), ISBN 978-1-55469-212-5 (hc.).

Grades 5-8 / Ages 10-13.

Review by Maggie Standish.

*** /4

excerpt:

I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. Okay, maybe I hadn't actually aced the quiz, but I hadn't flunked it either! So I hadn't turned into a math genius because of that umbrella zap after all. But I wasn't a math moron any more either. And maybe Seema was right the other day-maybe I was just starting to "get it." Something I never thought would happen in this lifetime.

 

Claire is a 15-year-old who is failing math, watching her nemesis Lucy date the boy she likes, and dealing with a controlling and abusive father who constantly walks both out and in on Claire and her mother. After being sent to the store in rain, Lucy finds a beautifully colored umbrella which ends up shocking her after being hit by lightning.

     Struck! is written with first person point of view. This perspective is helpful in watching Claire's reaction as those around her, especially her mother, change. The story is linear with a start and continuation to the end. Most of the characters remain static, but Claire and her mother develop. Claire's mother needs to change, though, so that the issues her parents' relationship causes can be solved. Most of the characters are there simply to help move the story along. The point of this story is to be careful what you wish for because your life might improve more without wishing. The story line is believable, with an ending that gives hope to readers, especially those whose parents are in a similar situation to Claire's.

     The novel moves quickly with lots of dialogue between Claire and her parents, and between Claire and her friends. There isn't much description outside of dialogue and the immediate problem. This helps reluctant readers keep with the flow of the story and not get bogged down with unnecessary details.

Recommended.

Maggie Standish, who lives in London ON, is a recent MLIS graduate.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.

Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.
 

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