Carolina Crow Girl

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Overview

Carolina lives with her mother and baby sister in an old school bus, and they're always moving just when Carolina seems to get settled. But this time things are different. First Carolina finds an abandoned baby crow and decides to care for him until he's old enough to fly. Then she befriends Stefan, who is as much of a loner as she is. What's going to happen when her mother wants to take off again?

After eleven-year-old Carolina begins to make decisions for herself ...

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Carolina Crow Girl

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Overview

Carolina lives with her mother and baby sister in an old school bus, and they're always moving just when Carolina seems to get settled. But this time things are different. First Carolina finds an abandoned baby crow and decides to care for him until he's old enough to fly. Then she befriends Stefan, who is as much of a loner as she is. What's going to happen when her mother wants to take off again?

After eleven-year-old Carolina begins to make decisions for herself and no longer feels constrained by her mother, she is able to let her pet crow fly free.

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Editorial Reviews

From The Critics
Eleven-year-old Carolina Lewis, her mother, Melanie, and her baby sister, Trinity, live in a school bus. The bus is hidden on the Crouch estate, behind a stand of ecualyptus trees near the ocean, not far from Santa Barbara, California. Melanie has driven the bus across the United States. They stop whenever there are opportunities for Melanie to find enough work to pay for food and other necessities. Now, they have taken up residence in a field above the Pacific Ocean. Carolina meets wheel chair-bound Stefan Crouch III, whose father owns the field, and is 11 years old, like she is. They fast become buddies. In fact, when Carolina's mother decides to move to Oregon, Carolina chooses to stay behind and live with Stefan and his family. The resulting friendship is made stronger by the fact that Stefan had a sister who died; Carolina has come to replace this much beloved sibling. Through their friendship, Carolina teaches a hurt family to love again, and models for a wheel chair-bound friend the power of animals to heal the soul. When Stefan's family returns her love, Carolina is able to accept herself as she is and to recognize and value her love for her own family. Genre: Friendship/Animals 2000, Puffin Books, 138 pp., $5.99. Ages 9 up. Reviewer: MaryAnnelle Baker; Overland Park, Kansas
School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-Although she loves her caring but naive mother and baby sister, Carolina longs to live in a house like other sixth graders instead of on a school bus parked on the edge of a rich family's property. And in this contemporary fairy tale, Carolina gets her wish-for the brief while it takes her to realize how much she wants and needs her own family, however imperfect and impoverished they are. In her most successful story to date, Hobbs addresses a younger audience, creating engaging and memorable characters. Carolina rescues a baby crow that seems reluctant to fly even when it matures sufficiently. In turn, she is rescued from despair by Stefan, the wealthy family's only living child, whose mobility is limited by a wheelchair but whose interests span the natural world. Stefan's mother, a socialite who has kept her dead daughter's room and possessions in wait for just such a surrogate as Carolina, surprises readers, who expect her to try to mold and suffocate the living girl. It is this mother who knows emotional loss and physical comforts who helps Carolina return to live in the school bus, with her own mother, with dignity. Readers who have developed a taste for symbolism in their stories will enjoy this tale, while reluctant readers will find themselves quickly drawn in by Hobbs's strong characters and rapidly unfolding plot.-Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley Public Library, CA
Christine Alfano
Hobbs gives herself ample opportunity to explore ideas in this novel, and throughout she asks readers to confront notions of what it means to be rich or poor, stable or uprooted, wild or caged. Carolina Crow Girl is an intriguing examination of the deeper meanings of freedom and love. It's also the remarkable story of two outsiders who find it possible, through friendship, to unlock the doors of their own cages.
Riverbank Review
Kirkus Reviews
Carolina's life is not a perfect one, but she's content. She, mother Melanie, and baby sister Trinity go from place to place in the old school bus that Melanie transformed into a home of sorts, with beds and a table and chairs-and no electricity or water, of course. They stop wherever there are opportunities for Melanie to find enough work to pay for food and other necessities; this time, they have taken up residence in a field above the ocean, where Carolina rescues an infant crow and it becomes her fast and only friend. She meets wheelchair-bound Stefan, whose father owns the field on which Carolina's family is squatting. She and Stefan hit it off, and he introduces her to his mother, who takes an understandable interest in her; her own daughter, Heather, died. When Melanie decides to move to Oregon, Carolina stays behind with Crow, living with Stefan's family. It's inevitable that Carolina will change her mind-Melanie is a loving mother and Stefan's mother has several issues to work out-but Hobbs (Get It While It's Hot. Or Not., 1996, etc.) handles the path of Carolina's reasoning well. It's an unusual story, with interesting characters and a strong plot, and it's fair to say that Crow steals the show, teaching Carolina how to accept change and to fly in spite of it. (Fiction. 9-12)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780141309767
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 10/28/2000
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 144
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 7.78 (h) x 0.48 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2003

    Very Good!

    ~*~i enjoyed this book very muck. it shows u the struggle between a mother and daughter and Carolina trying, in a way, 2 find herself!~*~

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 19, 2003

    Fabulous Book

    This is a book for young adults but I as an adult enjoyed it so much.It was a really good story that touched my heart..

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2002

    A Touching Novel

    Living in a schoolbus and moving around alot Carolina learns to make the right dessions when her mom leaves her with her bestfriend and his mother and father for awhile to see if she chosses to live with her friend or live on the bus with her mom.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 6, 2002

    OUTSTANDING

    It was one of the best books I've ever read

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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