Mary Ann Alice

Mary Ann Alice

by Brian Doyle
     
 

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In this brilliant and poetic novel, BRIAN DOYLE brings us back to the Gatineau River near Ottawa, the world of UP TO LOW and UNCLE RONALD.
Mary Ann Alice McCrank was named for the pretty church bell in the steeple of St. Martin's Church in Martindale. She has the soul of a poet and Mickey McGuire Jr. (son of Mickey, the narrator of UNCLE RONALD) is in love with

Overview


In this brilliant and poetic novel, BRIAN DOYLE brings us back to the Gatineau River near Ottawa, the world of UP TO LOW and UNCLE RONALD.
Mary Ann Alice McCrank was named for the pretty church bell in the steeple of St. Martin's Church in Martindale. She has the soul of a poet and Mickey McGuire Jr. (son of Mickey, the narrator of UNCLE RONALD) is in love with her. Mary Ann Alice is passionately interested in many things, especially the geology of her part of the world. Her teacher, the wonderful Patchy Drizzle, shares her passion for rocks and fossils, many of which can be found along the river and in caves under the famous Paugan Falls. But a new project to dam the river at Low places rocks, fossils, falls as wel as many farms in danger, including those of Mean Hughie from UP TO LOW and the strange Cork family. But the dam must go ahead. And, as with much technological change, it brings both benefits and tragedies to the community.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Told in seventh grader Mary Ann Alice McCrank's voice, who has the "soul of a poet," this story documents the trouble that the Paugan Dam Project brings to a small community in Quebec in 1928. Mary Ann Alice is named after the town's church bell, and people say she's pretty, though she's not truly convinced of that. She has all the normal problems of a seventh grader as well as knowing when to kiss Mickey McGuire, and how to deal with the Paugan Dam Project that is endangering the entire community. Along the Gatineau River, where Doyle has returned to the world he created in a past novel, Mary Ann Alice works to help feed the many workers on the project. Everyone is working on something dealing with the dam. This is a story of deceptive lawyers, unhappy people and tragic events based on real events. Filled with great down-home humor, although a bit rambling at times, the spirits of the well-crafted characters leap into your heart. A nominee for the Canada Council for the Arts Governor General's Literary Award, this book has a wonderful story once you are able to plow through the disjointed beginning. 2001, Groundwood Books,
— Christina Burbage
VOYA
Set in the small town of Martindale, this novel tells the story of life on the Gatineau River of Canada in the 1920s. Early twentieth-century village life is rendered in loving detail as the story is told through the eyes of Mary Ann Alice McCrank, a teenage schoolgirl. Mary Ann Alice is a charming creation—quick-witted, insightful, and inquisitive. Her fascination with learning is nurtured by her teacher, the unforgettable Patchy Drizzle. Patchy introduces Mary Ann Alice and her classmates to the world of geology and fossils, which are found in abundance in the rocks along the river. Suddenly, however, the community of Martindale is thrown into crisis when the townsfolk learn of a new project to dam the Gatineau, flooding not only the fossils but also the homes of many citizens. Is technological advancement worth this sacrifice? Doyle's story is written beautifully, and the scenes and characters are drawn deftly. Mary Ann Alice was shortlisted for the Governor General's Award, Canada's highest literary honor, and has won much critical acclaim. The characters and the theme, however, might have limited appeal for teen readers themselves. Although Doyle's exploration of the costs of technological advancement certainly has relevance for twenty-first century readers, this quiet and thoughtful book will be appreciated best by teen readers with a love for finely crafted prose and an interest in social history or geology. VOYA CODES: 5Q 2P M J S (Hard to imagine it being any better written; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2002, Groundwood/Douglas &McIntyre, 168p,
— Vivian Howard

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780888995513
Publisher:
Groundwood Books
Publication date:
07/17/2003
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
168
Product dimensions:
7.30(w) x 4.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
9 - 13 Years

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