From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7 The characters from Polly Horvath's My One Hundred Adventures
(2008) return in this charming sequel (2010, both Schwartz Wade). Jane Fielding and her family have been living in Canada, about as far away from their beach home in Massachusetts as you can get. Jane's new step-father Ned is baffled when he loses his job teaching French a language he doesn't actually speak ("I always looked on it as a kind of a frill"). They decide to move back to their beach home, but detours slow their return. Ned discovers that his brother has left a suitcase full of cash in his care, so he piles the family into the ancient car to return the money. They end up on a ranch in Nevada, and Jane develops her first serious crush on a young ranch hand. The plot is slight, but the language and characters are delicious. Becca Battoe's youthful narration allows listeners to see everything from Jane's perspective, and her gift of timing and inflection produce many laugh-out-loud moments. A delightful story. Tricia Melgaard, Centennial Middle School, Broken Arrow, OK
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This sequel to My One Hundred Adventures (2008) picks up the story of Jane and her family a year later in Saskatchewan, as they prepare to move away, returning to Massachusetts by a roundabout route. Circumstances arise that lead Ned, Jane’s stepfather, to reconnect with women from his past: first, an elderly First Nations woman who took him in when he was young, and next, his estranged mother and sisters. His journey determines the family’s destinations and parts of the plot. While Jane narrates the novel, much of it feels less like her story than in the previous book, though a particularly poignant subplot involves her enduring the hope and pain of a first, hopeless crush and the humiliation of realizing that everyone else knows. Many characters here are distinct, wonderfully idiosyncratic individuals, and Horvath’s fine-tuned observations are conveyed with subtlety and precision. The open-ended conclusion seems to promise another sequel. Grades 5-8. --Carolyn Phelan