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Eva of the Farm [Kindle Edition]

Dia Calhoun , Kate Slater
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

A girl’s struggle to save her family’s farm, told in verse, stands as a testament to the power of hope.

Twelve-year-old Eva DeHart knows her family’s farm is the best, most magical place in the whole world. The Farm has apple trees and sun daisies and a creek. The Farm has frightening things too—like cougars, bears, and a dead tree that Eva calls the Demon Snag. And everything at the Farm shoots out of Eva’s fingertips into her poems. She dreams of being a heroine of shining deeds, but who ever heard of a heroine-poet?

When a blight strikes the orchard and a letter from the bank arrives marked FORECLOSURE, Eva is given that very chance as she puts all the power of her imagination at work to save the Farm. From a booth at the farmer’s market to the snowbound hills where the coyotes hunt, Eva discovers that we face our fears and find our courage in the most unexpected places.

This novel by acclaimed author Dia Calhoun is about the transforming powers of imagination and hope, which can turn us all into heroes.

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-7-Circumstances created by the great recession coupled with unexpected medical bills and a crop-killing disease in the pear trees place Eva's family farm in foreclosure. It seems that these days, the 12-year-old is losing just about everything she loves: Grandma Helen, who supported her poetry writing, has died; her best friend moved to Seattle; and now she might have to say goodbye to the farm, her sanctuary with its apple trees, haunted outhouse, and sun daisies. Written in verse that is more cathartic expression than storytelling, Eva's own poems are scattered throughout and accented with italicized spurts that highlight her feelings, fears, and frustrations. In an effort to raise money to help her parents meet the bank's requirements, Eva sells her poetry at the local farmer's market. After a newspaper interviews her for a piece about the economy, Eva is profiled on TV and a Seattle talk show where she brings media attention to her family's plight. Despite her sincere efforts, she eventually must acquiesce to her family's financial misfortune and accept a new future even as she vows to always remain in spirit, "Eva of the farm." Like the protagonist in Katherine Hannigan's Ida B (Greenwillow, 2004), Eva presents a sense of urgency and pathos through the symbolism of an orchid's companionship. The beautifully composed language slowly relays Eva's journey through the realities of adult problems, and intuitive readers will appreciate the lyrical and metaphorical imagery. Collagelike illustrations introduce each section. This text offers much to prompt discussion and poetry writing.-Rita Soltan, Youth Services Consultant, West Bloomfield, MIα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.


"Eva's spirit soars."--Newbery Medalist Karen Hesse

"Named after Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s heroine from his epic poem Evangeline, 12-year-old Eva lives on her family’s beloved Acadia Orchard in Eastern Washington. In this beautiful, tightly woven novel in verse, which follows the progression of the seasons, she may have to leave her idyllic home, just like her namesake. As Eva plucks words from the world around her—'They are warm, / as though sprinkled / with all the spices of the sky'—her 'plant a forest, save a polar bear' father only sees the value of math, science and economics. Their rift grows wider when a blight starts the ripples of foreclosure. Eva begins to blame their mounting misfortunes on a blackened tree in the canyon known as the Demon Snag and the evil it must be emitting. Forming a fierce bond with the local Bead Woman, who’s encountered her own tough times, the resilient girl not only discovers a kindred artist, but the power of imagination, hope and even poetry to save her farm—and spirit. Calhoun doesn’t shy away from Eva’s reality, offering snapshots of the cycle of life, including a baby deer ripped from its mother’s womb. Although Eva’s poetry far surpasses most experienced poets, the effect leaves readers with splendid images to savor.
Fans of Karen Hesse will welcome this partner in poetry."
--Kirkus Reviews, May 15, 2012

"The beautifully composed language slowly relays Eva’s journey through the realities of adult problems, and intuitive readers will appreciate the lyrical and metaphorical imagery. Collagelike illustrations introduce each section. This text offers much to prompt discussion and poetry writing."
School Library Journal

Twelve-year-old Eva (Evangeline) loves her life on the family orchard in Washington State, loves her baby brother Achilles, and loves to write poetry. Indeed, writing poetry is Eva’s way of making sense of her world, as she writes about how much she misses her grandmother and her former best friend, Chloe, and how she worries that her family will lose their farm that, to her, is utterly magical. This last worry is not an idle one, as a events soon put Eva’s family in dire financial straits.

However, Eva’s poetry, a newfound adult friend, and Eva’s own strength bolster her through this difficult time, and although the story ends with the farm’s ownership still in limbo, there is a feeling of hope and possibility as well.... The potentially hopeful but ultimately unresolved ending is also refreshing, and kids who have also faced financial uncertainty may especially relate to Eva’s family’s plight. 

Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Product Details

  • File Size: 7620 KB
  • Print Length: 258 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: B007JLQL10
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (July 10, 2012)
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0061PT8Q0
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,156,817 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gorgeous and touching October 22, 2012
EVA OF THE FARM really reaches into your soul, finds your heartstrings, and gives them a little tug. Written in verse, this story about Eva and her family unfolds in a way that reminded me of being a kid again. Hard and difficult times hit her family, and Eva can only see it as a child would--and she vanquishes the pain in a way that will have you cheering her on.

I loved it. Loved it. Loved it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars a great read April 29, 2014
By maeve
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book is beautifully written, I love the poems Dia Calhoun incorporated into the text, it brings the story to life.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Words Can Heal June 15, 2013
The verse novel Eva of the Farm by Dia Calhoun is told from the point of view of Eva, a 12-year-old girl who finds herself in words and poetry. Though she loves her mother, father, and baby brother, she often seeks solitude in her favorite places on the farm. When she learns that her family is in danger of losing the farm - their home, their livelihood, her whole world - she becomes determined to find a way to save it. She begins to sell her poems for a dollar a piece at the local farmer's market, which leads to a part-time job with a local craftswoman. This kindly mentor figure encourages Eva to value her imagination as well as love, hope, and joy; she calls these four concepts/elements "the Greater Powers."

Set in modern-day Washington State, this story is a beautiful testament to family, environment, creativity, and hope. It has the innocence and hope of Pollyanna with just enough modernity to keep contemporary kids interested. Anyone who has potentially had to move away from the home they loved will relate to Eva's plight. The protagonist's love for poetry and the verse novel style will automatically attract young poets. The book is written in non-rhyming verse, with Eva's poems sprinkled throughout, and it all flows very naturally. Eva's emotions are captured very well in the poems she writes, especially when she's frustrated or feeling particularly imaginative. When things don't go right - when another notice comes in from the bank, when Eva learns what "foreclosure" means, when someone close to her falls ill - she reacts realistically and, in angry moments, says or does things she may regret later. But she doesn't give up. She won't give up.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Eva of the Farm November 3, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you like poetry and writing this is the best book ever ( my name is Eva).
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