Reading Level: Middle Grade
Publication Date: January 2012
Publisher: Random House / Schwartz and Wade
I've known it since last night:
It's been too long to expect them to return.
May is helping out on a neighbor's Kansas prairie homestead—just until Christmas, says Pa. She wants to contribute, but it's hard to be separated from her family by 15 long, unfamiliar miles. Then the unthinkable happens: May is abandoned. Trapped in a tiny snow-covered sod house, isolated from family and neighbors, May must prepare for the oncoming winter. While fighting to survive, May's memories of her struggles with reading at school come back to haunt her. But she's determined to find her way home again. Caroline Starr Rose's fast-paced novel, written in beautiful and riveting verse, gives readers a strong new heroine to love. (from Goodreads)
To say that May is courageous would be an understatement. As a young girl living on the frontier in 1870 her life is sure to be a hard one. After having to leave school because of her dyslexia, which is unknown of in the 18th century, her family heirs her out to her neighbor and his new wife. And then things really take a turn for the worst.
Written in prose, May B. tells the story of an amazing young woman struggling to survive. Her family is a loving one but after she is forced to leave school, they really have no other choice but to send her away. Her neighbors aren't mean people but May never was and never becomes a priority in their lives. The events that unfold are strange and scary and if I were in May's shoes, I'm not sure I would have survived.
I was left with a strong respect for young May and the hardships she faced and I absolutely loved the prose style writing - it just made it that much more enjoyable. I really think May B. would do well in the hands of young reluctant or non-readers. The easy flow of the words, the engaging story, the memorable characters all in all I think would appeal to younger readers.
May B. is a book I hope to share with my little one as soon as she's old enough. It's the type of book I would have read in middle school and one that I'm sure I would still remember vividly to this day.
Caroline Starr Rose's debut made huge impression with me and I know I'll be reading more of her books in the future.
5 / 5 Stars
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