Author: Kathryn Fitzmaurice
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Type of book: poetry, lost book, destiny vs fate, romance writing, Danielle Steel, feminism, environment, 2000s
Year it was published: 2013
(noun) The hidden power believed to control what will happen in the future; fate.
Eleven-year-old Emily Elizabeth Davis has been told for her entire life that her destiny is to become a poet, just like her famous namesake, Emily Dickinson. But Emily doesn’t even really like poetry, and she has a secret career ambition that she suspects her English-professor mother will frown on. Then a seeming tragedy strikes: just after discovering that it contains an important family secret, she accidentally loses the special copy of Emily Dickinson’s poetry that was given to her at birth. As Emily and her friends search for the lost book in used bookstores and thrift shops all across town, Emily’s understanding of destiny begins to unravel and then rewrite itself in a marvelous new way.
In her third novel, Kathryn Fitzmaurice again weaves a richly textured and delightful story about unexpected connections, about the ways that friends can help us see ourselves for who we truly are, and about the most perfect kinds of happy endings: those that happen just on time.
I liked the characters, in particular the conversations between Wavey and Emily about how they start with one thing, then they veer off into something interesting that young girls like them can wonder about. the character of Mortie is also adorable and both he and the girls really tugged at my heartstrings. The characters are well rounded, and Emily, anyways, does go through visible changes from being a bit neurotic to being hippie like. One needs order as well, I should add, something that the author didn't seem to go for.
When you do things differently, life changes.
This is in first person narrative completely from Emily's point of view. The books also tends to be a bit feminist and also talks of other authors such as Danielle Steel and Laura Ingalls Wilder. Some things that Emily does don't really fall into what an eleven year old girl should do such as walking and asking into bookstores instead of calling, and figuring out if they have the book. Strangely enough I liked the journey and the characters of Wavey and Mortie were enjoyable. The book was lighthearted in tone and some things I had a difficult time believing or understanding. The book also veers off into environmental angle slightly and I would have liked to know more about how it relates to Emily. Wavey's "crisis" wasn't really a crisis, just one or two chapters of emotional breakdown for a brief time. The tension would have helped readers feel bad for her. The book does have a potential to be turned into a four or a five star book though.
New York, The United States
About this author
When Kathryn was thirteen years old, her mother sent her to New York City over the summer to visit her grandmother, who was a science fiction author. After seeing how her grandmother could make the characters in her books into whomever she wanted, Kathryn decided that she, too, wanted to become a writer someday. Years later, after teaching elementary school, and taking many classes, she now writes full time and lives with her husband, two sons, and her dog, Holly, in Monarch Beach, California.
Kathryn was born in New York City, but grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona. She holds a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Chapman University. Her favorite thing to do is walk her dog, Holly, who, she says is so smart, she can practically empty the dishwasher. She also likes organizing absolutely anything, including messy garages, closets, and even cluttered junk drawers. If she could, she would eat the same thing for lunch everyday, which would be a ham, Swiss cheese, and tomato Panini, a green apple, and a chocolate soufflé.
Kathryn Fitzmaurice taught elementary school for six years before becoming a full-time writer. She lives in Monarch Beach, California, not far from the swallows' roost, with her husband and two sons.
This book was well written but I felt it tended to be boring and predictable. I feel that I don't really get to know the characters a lot and although I also read Danielle Steel at her age (well few years older anyways...) some might find it disturbing that a twelve year old wants to be a romance novelist. The idea toys with destiny and fate and while it asks the question, it never provides the definite answers to those questions, thus its left to the reader to figure out the correct answers. It also gives some examples of poetry, but I was more curious about sonnets and whatnot rather than haiku.
Quick notes: I won this book on goodreads.com thus this review will appear in its entirety on goodreads as well as the blog
3 out of 5
(0: Stay away unless a masochist 1: Good for insomnia 2: Horrible but readable; 3: Readable and quickly forgettable, 4: Good, enjoyable 5: Buy it, keep it and never let it go.)