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Drizzle Paperback – March 17, 2011


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; Reprint edition (March 17, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0142411132
  • ISBN-13: 978-0142411131
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 1 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #194,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4–6—Polly Peabody, 11, lives on an unusual rhubarb farm where it rains at exactly 1 p.m. every Monday, and some of the plants taste like chocolate. Like her parents and her grandmother before her, Polly loves the farm with all her soul. When Aunt Edith shows her a secret room, a library, filled with writhing ivy and bugs that fly in patterns that spell out words, she is thrilled. But then the weekly rain stops, plants start to die, Polly's older brother becomes ill, and Aunt Edith pressures Polly's dad to sell the property. Now Polly must interpret the farm's signs and symptoms to figure out both the problem and the solution. Why won't those insects just spell out what she needs to do rather than give her vague and puzzling hints? Polly's anxiety and lack of self-confidence—she is reading Emerson's "Self-Reliance"—keep her from making friends and dealing with a bully at school, although for readers, as for Polly, it's the stuff that happens on the farm that is most compelling. In general, Polly's insect and plant acquaintances are more developed than most of the humans, who never quite become convincing characters. However, Polly's gradual discovery of her own strange power and the joy she takes in her ability to help those she loves best is both entertaining and gratifying. Give this whimsical fantasy to fans of Ingrid Law's Savvy (Dial, 2008).—Eva Mitnick, Los Angeles Public Library
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

Eleven-year-old Polly has no friends at school. Her best friend is Harry, a unique rhubarb plant on her family’s midwestern farm, where it rains miraculously at the same time every Monday, and tourists come to enjoy a giant, amusement-park umbrella ride that her family has built. Polly and Harry communicate: he nods when he agrees with her and swats her with his leaves when he is angry. And Polly can talk with bugs, as well as plants. Her peaceful life on the farm changes, though, when the rain stops suddenly and her brother gets deathly ill. Does she have the power to save both the farm and her sibling? Polly’s wry interaction with Harry and other plants and wild creatures is the best part of this debut fantasy that has an environmental slant. The water conservation message at its core will make young, activist readers cheer for Polly as she works with friends, and sometimes with enemies, to bring back the rain and save the world. Grades 5-8. --Hazel Rochman --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

More About the Author

Kathleen Van Cleve lives in Philadelphia and teaches in the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing at the University of Pennsylvania. Drizzle is her first children's novel.

Customer Reviews

A great book for young readers.
Amazon Customer
They couldn't stop raving about the story, the characters and in particular the choices made by the heroine, Polly.
Linda
My 10 year old daughter absolutely loved this book, couldn't put it down.
emily r meyer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By J.Prather TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 6, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Polly Peabody believes in magic, and it's a good thing too, because she lives on a farm where the insects talk (or spell, really), the weeping willows really weep, the rhubarb plants communicate and it rains every Monday at 1:00. Just on their farm. All is not well though, because Polly often feels like a freak because she lives on such a magical place and when one day it quits raining, she must discover her true power so she can save not only the farm, but her family as well.

This is a very well written book that was captivating even for a grown up like me. What kid (or grown up for that matter) hasn't dreamed of living in an actual castle, and having conversations with animals? The author does a great job here of portraying a magical environment with just the right note of whimsy that makes the whole tale just mesmerizing. There's a great environmental message here about keeping in touch with the land and how everything is inter-related, but it's not heavy handed. The characters are well drawn and Polly is a character that I think every "tweener" can identify with, be it boy or girl.

There's quite a bit of what I would call "mysticism" here so parents be forewarned if you frown on that sort of thing. I really liked how the author included elements of Emerson's Self Reliance. Now this is a children's author that doesn't talk down to her readers. All in all it's a great fantasy that will be perfect for those kids who find Harry Potter and the like to maybe be a bit too dark. A recommend for anyone 8 and up who would like a good uplifting tale.
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Samuel Benneman on March 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover
My 8 year old son just tore through this book. He's a picky reader, but he LOVED this one. To say that Drizzle is just another kids book is to say that the Brooklyn Bridge is just another bridge. Buy this book now. It feels like an old friend and will probably become a classic.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By L. Coleman on May 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover
We recently purchased this book for the students at my K-8 inner city school. We often find ourselves struggling to convince our students to read books(especially of this length), but the kids dove right into Drizzle. They were taken away by the magical farm and the powers Polly soon discovers. The conflict her family faces is believable and made her real to the kids.

This book is so versatile that I am reading it to my six year old in small chunks and she hangs onto Polly's every word.

Buy this book for any kid who likes to dream!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Linda on December 14, 2010
Format: Hardcover
We recently read this book for our Mother Daughter Book Group. It was a hit with both the adults and the 11 year old girls. They couldn't stop raving about the story, the characters and in particular the choices made by the heroine, Polly. Our discussion of the book ranged from family decisions, to difficult school mates, to the water cycle and included role playing. We all highly recommend this book, which uses reality as a starting point for fantasy and magic. Chocolate Rhubarb, indeed!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By jason on May 30, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
This book was one of my favorite books I read.in my life. I loved the way they spoke. I think that this is a book for anybody to read. Good job writing this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jillschmill on April 24, 2013
Format: Paperback
We just finished reading this book with our 7 year old daughter. It was VERY hard for her (and us!) to close the book each night and wait until the next night to see what happened to Polly. As another reviewer mentioned, there are many ways to use this book to talk about family, friends, personal decisions, how no one is perfect, etc. We all loved this one and can't wait for another. The magic in this one was great and I could easily imagine this being made into a movie soon!

One note... the book opens with a scene of Grandmom's death from cancer, which is brought up a few times in the book, and they discuss the possibility of Polly's brother dying during the book. These were a little touchy to read sometimes because we have people with cancer in our family. Just something to know in case your situation is similar.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Camie on March 9, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love the book so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so so much.I think this book is the best
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kate McCartney on December 19, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
This is one of my favorite books! I love how the author makes everyone come alive i this book! You want to turn the page so fast so as not to miss a moment of this book! I love the slug part! The end is nice to!

- Catherine
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