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Young readers book reviews for ages 8 to 12 years old

*Wild Girl* by Patricia Reilly Giff- young readers book review
Also by Patricia Reilly Giff:


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Zig Zag Kids 1: Number One Kid / Zig Zag Kids 2: Big Whopper
Wild Girl
by Patricia Reilly Giff
Ages 9-12 160 pages Wendy Lamb Books August 2009 Hardcover    

Lidie, a 6th-grade girl from Brazil, is moving to upstate New York with her widowed father and older brother. The transition to the U.S. is difficult; Lidie doesn’t speak English, and her father and brother know her only as a little girl who loves the color pink and Snow White. School is itself difficult. Lidie cannot communicate with her teacher and runs away after an embarrassing situation involving the bathroom. A shorter, parallel story develops about a filly in a similar situation: leaving the comfort of home to move to a strange, new place.

Lidie’s father is a racehorse trainer, and her brother is training to become a jockey. It is their relationship with horses that draws the family together. Although her family does not realize it, Lidie has matured into an excellent rider with a special way with horses. When Lidie goes with her brother to prepare for a big race, the two grow closer; the language barrier relaxes for Lidie, and her father comes to know and love his older daughter.

The key to this story is relationships, both between family members and their horses. Each main character grows while learning from the others. With interesting insights into horseracing and immigration, Wild Girl is a quick read for horse lovers and other readers who love realistic stories about families and friendships.

Author Patricia Reilly Giff’s story immediately engages the reader with relatively short chapters, foreshadowing about the horse/girl relationship, and direct connections between self and text with the family bonds. The plot is undemanding and straightforward, making it an especially smart choice for readers who struggle or are reluctant.
Young readers book reviews for ages 8 to 12 years old

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  Kristine Wildner/2009 for curled up with a good kid's book  

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