Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Burns, Catherine Lloyd. The Half-True Lies of Cricket Cohen.

Burns, Catherine Lloyd.  The Half-True Lies of Cricket Cohen.  MacMillan/Farrar Strauss  2017  246p.  $16.99  elem/ms  ISBN 978-0-374-30041-8  Conflict  VG-BN

This is a realistic picaresque of sorts, the story of an 11-year-old girl who has a big imagination and lives in New York City with her parents and grandmother. Cricket is an individual, always imagining scenarios and making up adventures, avoiding doing her school work, and out-of-sync with her demanding mother. One weekend she stays with her grandmother while her parents are off on an errand, and through a series of misadventures, she helps her family to face a fact they have been denying, namely, her grandmother's developing dementia. The book is well written and will hold the interest of readers who really like realistic fiction, fiction about family relationships, and great characters. It does get a little bit long in places, especially toward the beginning, before Cricket's big adventure with her grandmother. It could probably use a little more editing in this early section of the story, but by the end it is quite a satisfying read.

It will particularly resonate with kids who are familiar with New York City! Recommended for ages 8-13 or so.

Summary: This is the story of a quirky, imaginative 11-year-old girl living in New York City with her family, whose expectations she has a very hard time living up to. The character is compelling and will win fans.

Families-Fiction                                                                   --Carol Kennedy

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