Monday, November 1, 2010

What Happened on Fox Street by Tricia Springstubb

Mo Wren is very mature for nearly eleven. She has to be, because she has to take care of her little sister, Dottie, who's somewhat of a Wild Thing. She also has to take care of their father, because it's just the three of them since her mother died. The Wrens live on Fox Street, and Mo thinks that it's the best place in the world to grow up. Even better, it's summer, and that's the best time of year because her best friend comes to visit her grandmother (Mo's neighbour). Of course, not everything is perfect. Mo's never seen a fox on Fox Street, for example, and there are a lot of mail coming from developers who want to buy out the houses on Fox Street. But Mo is determined that nothing is going to change as long as she has anything to say about it!

What Happened on Fox Street, like Crunch and other recent middle grade books, doesn't shy away from portraying families who are struggling in touch economic times. None of the families on Fox Street are that well off, and when Mo's friend's mom marries a man who is financially 'comfortable,' it creates a vague kind of Mo's mind as, for the first time, she has to deal with knowing that her family isn't 'comfortable' in the same way. Mo is a tough character but still vulnerable, determined and practical but still childlike in some ways. Also, in a fun coincidence, it takes place in the same area (and presumably at the same time) as another new 2010 release, I Am Number Four. A crossover is probably only found in fan fiction, though.

Find it at IndieBound.

Read it with:
The Moffats by Eleanor Estes
Bink and Gollie by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee
The Tilting House by Tom Llewellyn
I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore

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