First-time children's book author Esmè Raji Codell delivers an uplifting tale of one girl's discovery of her inner talent with the aid of a remarkable teacher.
When a self-conscious and quiet Sahara Jones gets put into Special Needs class, she gets dubbed "Sahara Special." Thankfully, her mom insists that she be put with the other kids, and Sahara winds up with Madame Poitier, or "Miss Pointy," as her teacher. Miss Pointy exposes her class to eccentric subjects like Puzzling and Mad Science, talks one-on-one to students through class journals and notes, and treats her students with respect and fairness. Slowly, Sahara begins to feel like a talented human being as Miss Pointy encourages her to tap into her writing talent, and when Sahara receives a personal gift, she feels extra-special indeed.
Quiet and gentle, with an underlying sense of power -- a reflection of the main character herself -- Codell's novel is an inspiring read that will touch readers' spirits. Audiences will be entranced by the author's almost magical storytelling, while budding writers in particular will be encouraged by Sahara's inner shine. An excellent read that will speak to kids, parents, and especially teachers. Matt Warner