Friday, November 14, 2008

Much Ado About Anne

The girls are back! School is about to start and Jess, Emma, Cassidy and Megan are all heading into the seventh grade. Life has been swimming along for the girls, but there have been a few changes along the way. Cassidy's mom is still taping her show "Cooking with Clementine" and on top of this she has a new boyfriend - Stanley Kincaid. Cassidy is not thrilled about this. "Stan the man" is short and bald and an accountant of all things! Not at all like her dad, who Cassidy still misses like crazy. Emma is trying to let go of her crush on Zach. Megan is still finding it difficult to be in the middle of friendships with the book club girls and with the Fab 3. And lastly, Jess is feeling the stress at home. Her mom is back home at Half Moon Farm, but Jess knows there is something going on. She is hoping her mom isn't thinking of going back to the soap opera again.

It is time for the first book club meeting of the year and the girls are in for a surprise. The mothers went and invited Becca Chadwick and her mom to join. They figured the invitation would help "build bridges" between the girls and Becca. Emma especially, isn't pleased with this addition, because Becca does fling an inordinate amount of torture her way.

Once the first meeting is in full swing, they moms and daughters set about the big task of choosing the next bookclub read. Little Women won't be easy to top. Many titles are tossed about, but either Emma has read them already or they don't meet Mrs. Chadwick's criteria for appropriate themes. Finally they settle on Anne of Green Gables.

What will happen to the dynamics of the book club once Becca has access to what really goes on? Will the girls be able to be themselves with Becca around? Can the mothers survive having Mrs. Chadwick in the book club as well?

Along the way Jess discovers why her parents are stressed. Her mom isn't leaving, but Half Moon Farm is in trouble. If they don't raise the money to pay their taxes in time, Jess may be on her way to NYC to live! The girls must band together to try to help out, and they must use their talents along the way to ensure success.

Heather Vogel Frederick has written a delightful sequel to The Mother-Daughter Book Club. Each character grows within the story, and the girls are growing up in a realistic fashion as well. In these crazy times where so many lives are filled with stress, it is refreshing to sit down and read a book that highlights family and simple pleasures like ice-skating, book clubs, and camping trips (ill-fated though they may be!) Heather Vogel Frederick manages to pull this off without seeming too good to be true or treacle in the least. Fans of the first book, as well as those who enjoy Birdsall, and Lucy Maud Montgomery will eat this up.

1 comment:

Ms. Yingling said...

I keep reading how good this one is, and since I love Anne, I can't wait to read it. (Reserves can be sloooow!) These are the best covers!