Aaah, a story set in the south read on a hundred degree day. The weather certainly got me in the mood for this one!
Violet Raines is sitting in church, pretty much minding her own business, when in walks the Gold family. They are late, and there is a bit of a buzz. There aren't usually strangers walking through church! Violet's best friend Lottie shoves a note in her hands reading "Don't you think she's pretty? She looks like a model! I wonder how old she is! Let's try to meet her after church!" (arc p.4). So it begins.
Melissa is quite glamorous. She does come from Detroit - the murder capital- after all. Lottie is quite drawn to Melissa and her interest in soap operas, make-up and celebrities. Violet's not quite ready for all of these girlie changes. She still likes hunting down the cups to get free brain freezes, squeezing into the tree cave, and hanging around with Eddie.
When lightning hits Lottie's house, she and her sisters need to find a place to stay. Violet wants her in her house, but Mrs. Gold who has a big house and doesn't have to go to work everyday, insists that Lottie and her sisters stay with them. Violet's heart is fit to break as she tries to navigate what it is to be eleven and not quite ready to move out of being a kid.
Danette Haworth has written a delightful story filled with memorable characters. The push and pull of a friendship between three girls rings so true, as does the subtle shift in the relationship between Eddie and Violet. There is an innocence to the story, but the situation is so universal. Violet is the kind of girl who will stay in your memory for quite some time.