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Rosetown Summer (The Rosetown Books)
door Cynthia Rylant
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I love the sweet nostalgia of this book, and Flora's thoughtful negotiation of challenging issues. In this one, a gentle approach to change -- not just the changes that might happen to her beloved bookstore, but also the changes that are happening around her as her friends find ways to follow their own interests. Flora finds way to support them, and is supported in turn. I am a huge sucker for letterpress and libraries, so of course I am enjoying this series.
Advanced Readers' Copy provided by Edelweiss.
A sweet sequel to Rosetown featuring the same characters and places (library, bookshop, bakery) in the summer before 5th grade in 1973 small Rosetown, Indiana. Flora loves books and horses and becomes a Storytime assistant to Mr. Anderson at the Rosetown Free Library. Nessy loves piano and goes to music camp.. Yury and his collie, Friday graduate frome beginner obedience class. All three care about each other, and especially Wings and a Chair Used Books owned by the delightful Miss Meriwether, and remain fast friends. Rylant's description of the conservatory in Indianapolis, with its glass walls, many habitats, and tea room made me want to visit there. Very appropriate for a juvenile audience who like quiet, thoughtful stories.
From Newbery Medalist Cynthia Rylant comes the sweet and resonant follow-up to the critically acclaimed Rosetown, continuing the story of nine-year-old Flora Smallwood's life in quiet Rosetown, Indiana. It is August in Rosetown, Indiana. Ten-year-old Flora is having a calm and busy summer filled with old friends and new projects, dear pets, and, of course, many hours at her favorite place: Wings and a Chair Used Books. It is her constant and her comfort. But change may be ahead for Wings and a Chair, and Flora is uneasy about what it will bring.
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Dewey Decimale Classificatie (DDC)813.6 — Literature English (North America) American fiction 21st Century
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ETA: I first read Rosetown Summer in August 2021. I enjoy this sequel. Definitely. Both books are great. But this one is shorter and even less happens. The writing is still great. But set your expectations a bit lower. Definitely character driven.
Premise/plot: Yesterday I reviewed Rosetown by Cynthia Rylant. Rosetown Summer is the sequel. It is set in the summer of 1973 in Rosetown, Indiana. Fourth grade is complete, and Flora and Yury have the whole summer ahead. But change is coming...the owner of Wings and a Chair Used Books may be moving away!
My thoughts: I loved, loved, loved the first book. I love, love, love this second book. Flora and I are just kindred spirits I tell you. Except FLORA is better with glue. Definitely better at glue! This was just a treat of a book.
Yury says I should write stories,” Flora said. “But I’d rather read them.”
Her father nodded. “I’d rather look at photographs than take them,” he said.
“Really?” asked Flora.
“But I guess if all photographers felt that way,” answered her father, “we wouldn’t have any photographs to look at.”
The bookshop had, in many ways, become their story, Flora and Yury’s. Every story needs a setting and a beginning, and Wings and a Chair had given them both.
“Is Miss Meriwether going to move away?” she asked her mother. Flora wasn’t sure she really wanted to know the answer. When a question is so big inside one’s mind, sometimes a person does not really want to know its answer.
Her mother sighed. She looked away a moment, then looked back at Flora.
“She seems torn,” Flora’s mother said. “Miss Meriwether is at one of life’s crossroads: to stay or to go. This is a problem many people face.”
Flora shook her head. “Not me,” she said. “I would always choose to stay.”
Her mother smiled. “But if you aren’t at a crossroads yet, dear,” she said, “how can you know? Sometimes a person really must choose between two good things.”
Two good things, thought Flora.
“I would choose the thing that involved a cat,” she said.
Her mother laughed.
“Could I help you with Toddler Story Time until school starts?” she asked, looking partly at his large friendly face and partly at the craft table in the far corner.
“I am good with glue,” she added.
Mr. Anderson hesitated for just a moment, and then he laughed.
“You’re hired!” he said. “I am terrible with glue!”
Mr. Anderson was pleased to see her.
“Good morning, Flora!” He beamed at her. “Are you ready to get started? We need lettuces and carrots and paper pails to put them in. Here, let me show you.”
And just like that, Flora stepped from the old to the new. Here she was, by herself, being Flora in a different way. She could hardly believe it. This thing she was doing alone.
“Do you remember the story of Peter Rabbit?” Flora asked Nessy.
“Sure,” said Nessy. “He squeezed under the gate.”
“He did,” said Flora. “Mr. Anderson read it to the toddlers today, and they listened to every word. Two little girls held hands while they listened.”
“That was us,” said Nessy with a giggle.
Flora regarded this necklace as something so meaningful that she had carefully put it away and planned to wear it only on special occasions.
So why she decided to start wearing it every day during these ordinary last days of summer, Flora wasn’t sure. One morning she opened a dresser drawer, removed the box, and put the necklace around her neck. And now she did this every morning.
There is a meaning to some things that a person cannot always define. When an object has some link to the heart, it is often because it came from someone dear or was loved by someone dear who has passed away. Or sometimes the object is a treasured reminder of an experience: a winning game, the first sight of the ocean, a project carried through with intense devotion.
“Did you know that people used to ride horses to the bank in Rosetown?” she asked him. She would have to think all of her many thoughts later.
“You have told me that a million times,” said Yury with a smile.
Flora smiled too. They had spent a lot of time together if a story had been shared a million times. A lot of time. Enough for a foundation.
Flora bent over and gave Friday a big hug.
Maybe someday she would take Yury to see the Tree of Life.
But for now it was almost time to start fifth grade.
What a beautiful day this was. In Rosetown, Indiana. ( )