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Adventures with Waffles by Maria Parr
Amulet 7: Firelight by Kazu Kibuishi
Avatar: The Last Airbender: Smoke and Shadow Part 2 by Gene Luen Yang
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Cat In The City by Julie Salamon
Chasing Secrets by Gennifer Choldenko
The Circle of Lies by Crystal Velasquez
The Curious World of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
Ellen's Lion: Twelve Stories by Crockett Johnson
Food Wars!, Vol. 1 by Yuuto Tsukuda
Fridays with the Wizards by Jessica Day George
Ghostbusters: Mass Hysteria! Part 2 by Erik Burnham
A Handful of Stars by Cynthia Lord
Knitting Bones by Monica Ferris
Listen, Slowly by Thanhha Lai
The Locksmith issue 1 by Terrance Grace
Lunch Lady and the Bake Sale Bandit by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
A Most Unique Machine by George S. May
My Little Pony: Micro-Series: #4: Fluttershy by Barbara Randall Kesel
My Little Pony Micro-Series: #6 Applejack by Bobby Curnow
Oz: Road to Oz by Eric Shanower
Paper Towns by John Green
Relish: My Life in the Kitchen by Lucy Knisley
RoadFrames: The American Highway Narrative by Kris Lackey
Serendipity and Me by Judith L. Roth
Shoplifter by Michael Cho
Sparky! by Jenny Offill
Tiger Boy by Mitali Perkins
To Be A Cat by Matt Haig

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

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My Kind of Mystery Reading Challenge 2017 February - January 2017-8



A Handful of Stars: 05/20/16

A Handful of Stars by Cynthia Lord

Maine was a popular setting for tween fiction in 2015. Concurrent themes with the local have been immigration, language barriers, French heritage (by way of Quebec), and how rural most of it is. A Handful of Stars by Cynthia Lord adds to that mix blueberries.

Lily's blind dog gets away from her and leads her on a chase to the blueberry picking fields, staffed mostly by itinerant workers. Lily meets Salma Santiago and after some very awkward introductions the girls become friends.

Lily makes spending money by selling painted birdhouses at her grandparents' store. Salma begins helping her but has a very unorthodox (from Lily's POV) approach. They are also more popular, leading to some feelings of jealousy.

But most of the story is Lily trying to convince the town to let Salma enter the Blueberry Queen pageant, something usually reserved for year-round residents. It's in their resistance that Lily begins to recognize her own prejudices about Salma and her family.

Mixed in with all of this are facts about blueberries from Maine. My only quibble here is that the book would have us believe that the vast majority of blueberries eaten in the United States come from Maine. That's not true. The top producing states are Michigan, Georgia, Oregon and Washington. Heck, even New Jersey out performs Maine.

Two stars

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