From School Library Journal
Grade 5–8—When her grandfather is injured in a tractor accident, eighth-grader Cassie accompanies her father and pesky younger brother from Oregon to Ruben's bedside in rural Kentucky. She has never met her grandfather and is determined to learn why he and Dad don't get along. Ruben lovingly welcomes the youngsters, gives them information about farm life, and keeps them entertained with a steady stream of corny jokes. Cassie thinks often about her mother, revealing that she died on a gray, stormy day, but sharing no additional details about the incident. She uses memories of her mother's spirit and no-nonsense brand of advice to fuel her determination to learn the true cause of the animosity between her father and grandfather, a revelation that is surprising and satisfying. Cassie's encounters with Ruben's neighbor Vicki and her son TJ provide additional drama to this tale. The novel's simplicity, humor, action, and warmth will appeal to a broad range of readers.—Laura Scott, Farmington Community Library, MI
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City girl Cassie has never met her grandfather, but when he's injured in an accident, she's sent to help out at his Kentucky farm. Cassie adapts well to the simple country life, even after suffering an attack by a neighbor's crazed turkey. But things become more complicated when she decides to get to the bottom of a long-running dispute between her father and grandfather. This slice-of-life story is both sweet and funny, and Birdseye's detailed setting and strong characters make the familiar setup fresh. Cassie is a regular kid who reacts to the feud with a mixture of empathy and impatience, and her determination to fix the problem is both appropriately naive and well intentioned. The outcome is contrived and a bit sentimental (a storm that threatens the farm brings the family together), but this is, nonetheless, a feel-good read. Krista HutleyCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved