The Middle of Somewhere

( 3 )

Overview

VERONICA SPARKS IS hitting the road and she is going to shake the dust of her little town off her shoes and see the world!

Well, someday. For now, she’s hitting the road in an RV with her cantankerous grandfather and her hyperactive little brother. Ronnie’s grandfather is a wind prospector, and they are heading across Kansas in search of a good stiff breeze. Okay, so it’s not the trip of her dreams. But with her newly affirmatized attitude, Ronnie figures that traveling ...

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Overview

VERONICA SPARKS IS hitting the road and she is going to shake the dust of her little town off her shoes and see the world!

Well, someday. For now, she’s hitting the road in an RV with her cantankerous grandfather and her hyperactive little brother. Ronnie’s grandfather is a wind prospector, and they are heading across Kansas in search of a good stiff breeze. Okay, so it’s not the trip of her dreams. But with her newly affirmatized attitude, Ronnie figures that traveling somewhere is better than traveling nowhere. That is, until her little brother manages to disappear into thin air.

On one weird, windy, wild ride across the prairie, Ronnie discovers that there are some things you just can’t plan for or seize control of—but that sometimes a little chaos is just what a girl needs.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Fans of Jack Gantos’ Joey Pigza series are sure to appreciate Ronnie and Gee’s excellent adventure.”—Booklist
School Library Journal

Gr 4-6
When Ronnie's mother injures her knee, Ronnie and her five-year-old brother are sent on a trip with the grandfather they barely know to give her time to heal. It's clearly necessary for the kids to leave their mother in peace, as Gee's ADHD makes him a wearying companion. Lured by Pop's spanking new RV, the siblings are initially willing to travel with him as he scouts out suitable wind-farm locations across Kansas. His involvement with his grandchildren is grudging at best. Ronnie frequently feels hung out to dry while Gee bounces them from one untenable situation into another: climbing to the top of a humongous steam shovel where he hangs paralyzed by fear, trying to hide a stray dog who's stowing away in the trailer, etc. It's only when Gee disappears that Ronnie discovers the depth of Pop's feelings for them. There are some funny moments among the antic-paced events of this novel, and readers will sympathize with Ronnie's situation as she tries to fashion a reasonable facsimile of a vacation out of her difficult babysitting assignment. It's hard to know whether the experience is more satisfying or exhausting.
—Miriam Lang BudinCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Ronnie takes care of her ADHD little brother, Gee, with more responsibility than usual for a 13-year-old, while developing her own philosophy from a self-help book. Opportunity for a summer vacation emerges when Ronnie's grandfather arrives at their Missouri home in a brand new RV and a business plan to travel through Kansas for some "wind prospecting." Mom seizes the chance to recuperate from a broken ankle and convinces Pops to take the children for two weeks. But traveling with an older, quirky loner not used to children proves to be less of a vacation and more of a thrill ride with some alarming moments for all three. Gee's overactive exuberance and impulsive behavior are quite a challenge for Ronnie, left to babysit at each campsite while Pops is out working. Quoting from her book, Ronnie tries to keep a positive outlook, but when Gee disappears to follow a carnival performer, and her grandfather gets hurt in a motorcycle accident, things get a bit serious, if not intriguing, before they are neatly resolved. While Cheaney provides plenty of "oh-my-gosh" scenarios with Gee's escapades, the story, as the trip, tends to drag on a bit until the climactic conclusion, despite the crafty, descriptive first-person narrative. (Fiction. 12-14)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780440421658
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 10/14/2008
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 720,329
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.50 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

J. B. Cheaney’s The Playmaker was named one of Booklist’s Top Ten First Novels for Teens. She and her husband live in the Ozarks of Missouri.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
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