If only her life were a story on paper, she could tear it into a million pieces and start over.
Ten-year-old Francie McLean wants to be like her best friend, Randi—pretty, popular, and kindhearted—everything she isn’t. Francie struggles to be someone she is not and somehow control her world that way. But she can’t control Randi’s frequent headaches that ruin their summer fun.
Randi goes away for mysterious medical tests, leaving Francie to endure the bullies on the school bus alone. When Randi returns, Francie is elated until her mother greets her with tears and tragic news. Randi has cancer.
Francie and Randi Picconi have been inseparable since Francie’s family moved to Long Island in the summer of 1976. Francie admires and sometimes envies Randi. She often plants her feet in Randi’s footprints and wonders what it would be like to be her. Now she wonders how it feels to have cancer. She questions God, “Why create beauty only to take it away?” Nothing makes sense to her anymore.
When Randi begins treatments, her father begins drinking too much. As her health deteriorates, his problem with alcohol escalates until it threatens to loosen the threads that hold their family together in this difficult time of their lives.
As Randi’s battle with disease drags on, Francie’s desire to fit in at school pulls her away from the person who needs her most. Francie faces a series of hard choices: should she do the right thing and spend time with sick Randi, or hang out with Lucille and Nina who are healthy and fun? Will their friendship survive the disease that changes everything?
Set on Long Island in 1979, Randi’s Steps is a coming-of-age story that goes beyond the expected themes of friendship, boyfriends, and self-doubts. Randi’s Steps exposes the dark places in a young girl’s heart and the challenges of facing the truth about herself.
|File size:||240 KB|
|Age Range:||5 - 11 Years|
About the Author
After graduating from the Fashion Institute of Technology, Frances worked for Bridal Guide Magazine. When she began homeschool teaching, she turned her creative talents toward writing children’s books, writing every day as well as taking classes. She prefers to write inspirational stories that bring encouragement to the reader in some way. Her work has been published in Clubhouse Jr. Magazine, two anthologies and Christian homeschooling newsletters. Her stories have placed in contests for Writer’s Digest Magazine and the Faithwriters.com writer’s challenge. She also enjoys writing for her blog, francysnewmorning.com. Frances lives on Long Island with her husband, five children and a little Yorkie with a big bark.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Reviewed by Gisela Dixon for Readers' Favorite Randi’s Steps by Frances Judge is a coming of age story for young teenagers and children set in the early '80s. Randi's Steps follows the lives and friendship of two school girls named Randi and Francie. Randi is a popular, kind-hearted girl and Francie, although she is Randi’s best friend, struggles with some self-esteem and sometimes jealousy issues because of her friend’s popularity. As time goes by, Randi develops headaches that get more and more frequent and she appears to be getting ill. At first, Francie is annoyed at times and feels that her friend is just making excuses. However, Randi is diagnosed with cancer and Francie finds herself caught between wanting to support and be with her best friend and also wanting to hang out with other “normal” healthy girls. What happens as the two girls go through these trials and tribulations that also test their friendship forms the plot of the novel. In addition, Randi's Steps also addresses some important issues like bullying in school and alcoholism and how it can affect and even ruin entire families. Randi's Steps is a heartwarming tale of school life, adolescence, and friendship. Almost everyone reading this book may be able to identify with some aspects of it and what teenage life can be like. However, there are also serious issues that are addressed in the telling of this story which I appreciated. Bullying in particular, and taunting and social isolation during school life are important social issues highlighted in this story. There is a Christian theme underlying this story that may not be obvious from just looking at the synopsis or the cover page. Although this a story about a young girl’s path toward maturity and adulthood, it may be suitable reading for people of all ages.