"This is a beautiful book, filled with hope. You'll cry and laugh along with Carley as she learns to lower her defenses enough to love--and, more surprisingly, be loved. It's a story you'll long remember." ~~Patricia Reilly Giff, Newbery Honor-winning author of Pictures of Hollis Woods and Lily's Crossing "An astonishing debut! Lynda Mullaly Hunt's direct style of writing has readers rooting for Carley Connors and all of the Murphys from start to satisfying finish."
~~Leslie Connor, ALA Schneider Family Award-winning author of Waiting for Normal and Crunch.
* "Carley is a modern-day Gilly Hopkins, bright and strong, angry and deeply hurt. . . . By the end of this poignant debut, readers will be applauding Carley's strength. . . . A worthy addition to the foster-family shelf."
(Kirkus Reviews, starred review)
"Hunt's heart-wrenching debut believably captures Carley's painful one-step-forward, two-steps-back process, particularly as she acts out in order to protect dealing with her emotions. . . . Carley promises Mrs. Murphy that she'll 'have a happy life someday,' and readers will be cheering her on."
"Carley's struggles with anger, regret, and self-worth both balance and deepen this coming-of-age tale. . . . Speaks to the universal experience of growing up but will especially resonate with readers who have questioned the hands they have been dealt and wonder how to move forward nonetheless. . . . Vacillates between uplifting and heartbreaking as Carley learns to love, be loved, and let go."
(The Horn Book)
"Undeniably affecting. Hunt's writing is strong and her characters well-developed and believable . . . readers will . . . be drawn into this story of a girl's struggle against the ingrained belief that she is undeserving of kindness and generosity."
"This debut novel holds its own. . . . Affectingly told. Believing that she can, someday, have a loving family of her own . . . makes a different kind of happy ending. Middle grade and teen readers will find this an engaging story."
(Voice of Youth Advocates)
About the Author
Lynda Mullaly Hunt has the best job in the world! She is also a former teacher and Scenario Writing coach. She is active in SCBWI-NE, where she is the Director of the annual Whispering Pines Writers' Retreat in Rhode Island. Besides reading and writing, Lynda enjoys juggling and watercolor painting--but not at the same time. She lives in Connecticut with her husband, two kids, impetuous beagle, and beagle-loathing cat. She is now working on her next middle-grade novel.