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Letters From the Heart


Gr 5-8-This series features a multicultural group of junior high girls in Brookline, MA. Charlotte and her widowed father are new in town, and they have lived all over the world. Katani has a flair for design. Korean-born Avery, a no-frills type of girl, in the literal sense of the word, was adopted when she was an infant. Maeve is a drama queen and dreams of stardom. In Bad News/Good News, Charlotte discovers that her father is considering an offer to teach at Oxford in England and she wants to stay put for a while. The episode centers on how the girls come to her rescue, how she learns to deal with her own ambivalent feelings about the move, and how she comes to better understand her father and his grief. A subplot introduces Isabel, who has come to Brookline with her ailing mother. She will become the newest member of the Beacon Street Girls. In Letters, Maeve learns that her parents are separating. Although she struggles with dyslexia, she is certain that she can keep them together if she can just learn to be the "perfect" daughter her mother so desperately wants. She learns some valuable lessons about herself, and about the real meaning-and sometimes real pain-of growing up. The stories are well written and should have broad appeal. If there is a fault at all, it is that the characters are sometimes more mature, self-aware, or articulate than the average seventh grader. Nevertheless, the lessons about loyalty, honesty, friendship, and family are presented in an appealing fashion.

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Tags: Charlotte, father, Heart, Letters, queen, drama