From the Publisher
Praise for Iva Honeysuckle Discovers the World: "
Here is story-telling in its full glory! Iva Honeysuckle is destined to become as distinctive and well-loved as Pippi Longstocking. In fact, Iva might be Pippi's double first cousin."Kathi Appelt, National Book Award finalist and Newbery Honor-winning author of The Underneath"
The real treasure here is the fresh, quirky characterization of Iva."Kirkus
Children's Literature - Ellen Welty
Iva Honeycutt lives in Uncertain, Virginia with her sisters and parents. They live next door to Mrs. Honeycutt's sister and Mr. Honeycutt's brother, who are married to each other and who have three children who are the same age as the children in Iva's family. Iva's family has never gone anywhere. Iva wants to be an explorer and make important discoveries like Captain John Smith. She has renamed herself Iva Honeysuckle for that reason. When her mom and aunt announce that they are taking all six children to Stingray Point for a week, Iva knows that this is her big chance to make a discovery. What she does instead is tattle on her cousin Heaven, lose her mom's camera, sneak into a neighbor's apartment, and trick her little sister into giving Iva her souvenir money. The author has failed to create a sympathetic protagonist or well-developed secondary characters and the childish humor which might have carried the story wears thin by the end of the book. Teachers and librarians would do better to direct readers to The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall or to Beverly Cleary's Ramona stories. Reviewer: Ellen Welty
School Library Journal
Gr 2–5—Iva Honeycutt (aka Iva Honeysuckle) is at it again. In her second adventure, the 10-year-old and her family are finally getting away from Uncertain, Virginia. They are going on a weeklong vacation to Stingray Point, where Iva can put her "discoverer" skills to good use. But, in order to be successful in her plans to find pirate treasure, or something equally exciting, she has to get away from her annoying double-first cousin. This proves difficult because Heaven is always around with her "Daily Life Cards" and her tattling ways. When Iva meets London Howdyshell on the beach, she immediately believes that she has found the perfect companion to be her scientist-partner. Unfortunately, Heaven intrudes on the friendship and Iva finds herself lonely and on the verge of being outed for breaking the rules. How Iva eventually uses her skills will surprise readers. Ransom's story line seems to mirror her first book with exaggerated rivalry and summertime adventure. In addition, the reconciliation between Heaven and Iva seems to be a bit forced. Ross's line drawings add some visual charm to the story. Although not a necessary purchase, this title will appeal to Judy Moody and Junie B. Jones fans and those looking to enjoy a new heroine.—Annette Herbert, F. E. Smith Elementary School, Cortland, NY
Summer vacation, Iva Honeysuckle–style. When Iva's cousin Heaven pulls a card from her Daily Life deck and reads, "Pack for a long trip," both 9-year-olds find it hard to believe they are going anywhere. Living next door to each other in Uncertain, Va., means they never go anywhere. Turns out the Daily Life card was right, and soon, both families load into cars and head to the beach on the Chesapeake Bay. Staying in a small house with six kids and their mothers turns out to be harder than anyone expected. The older cousins are boy-crazy, the little kids need constant watching, and Heaven and Iva compete for the affections of glamorous London Howdyshell, straining their already fractious relationship. Iva adds to the friction by refusing to shower or brush her teeth for the vacation. The arguing and sniping drags on the narrative, leaving few likable characters. Iva, who gets into trouble at every turn, often chooses to simply cover up her errors rather than make them right. The vacation is made more confusing by colloquialisms ("A goose walked over Iva's grave") that may tantalize but will make little sense to young readers. The girls do learn that blood is thicker than water, but it takes a painfully long time to realize it. (Fiction. 7-10)