Eleven-year-old Charlie Reese has been making the same secret wish every day since fourth grade. She even has a list of all the ways there are to make the wish, such as cutting off the pointed end of a slice of pie and wishing on it as she takes the last bite. But when she is sent to the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina to live with family she barely knows, it seems unlikely that her wish will ever come true. That is until she meets
Wishbone, a skinny stray dog who captures her heart, and Howard, a neighbor boy who proves surprising in lots of ways. Suddenly Charlie is in serious danger of discovering that what she thought she wanted may not be what she needs at all.
ABOUT BARBARA O’CONNOR:
Barbara O’Connor’s awards include the Parents Choice Gold and Silver Award, American Library Association Notable Books, IRA Notable Books for a Global Society, School Library Journal Best Books, and Kirkus Best Books. Her books have been nominated for children’s choice awards in 38 states and voted as a state favorite by children in South Carolina, Indiana, Kansas, and South Dakota.
Barbara was born and raised in Greenville, South Carolina. She draws on her Southern roots to write award-winning books for children in grades 3 to 6.
She currently lives in Asheville, NC. Her latest book is Wish, a middle grade novel published by FSG.
Wish by Barbara O’Conner is the story of Charlemagne Charlie and her story is one that will definitely find a place in my future classroom library. When I started this review I was thinking about doing it the ol’ fashion way and just write paragraphs on why I liked it and why I didn’t but when I came to think of the reasons why I didn’t like it I couldn’t think of any! While MG is not my “typical” fun reading age range, I have decided that as a teacher and future school librarian that I need to expand my horizon and read more books that I could recommend to more than high school aged children. So, instead of the regular review I am going to give you three reasons why you should read Wish and/or pass it along to someone close to you that would love this book as much as I did.
- The characters: I’m not going to lie, I completely connected to Charlie right off the bat. Coming from a broken home, Charlie is upset and unable to fully verbalize what is making her upset. So, like most children they have to learn things the hard way. I think that not only Charlie’s character but that of her friend Howard will be a delight for all students!
- Dogs: Hey, I’m normally a cat person but I absolutely loved Wishbone. This story and especially Wishbone gave me such found memories of another series that I absolutely loved growing up called Shiloh by . I’m not saying that they are alike but even as a cat person I couldn’t help but love the relationship that grew between these two! Ah, made my heart melt (and don’t tell my husband but maybe get a dog too!)
- The message: Finally, I want to talk about the message that this book is trying to tell. Now, I’m not going to say that I know exactly what message that is for 100% sure, but I know what it says to me. It says that despite the way your life begins, you can always find a home, some where you belong. Stories like this make my heart melt!
I recommend Wish for any teacher to add to their collection of stories to not only have their students read independently but for you to read TO them. I know, I know, but I know for a fact that even older kids love to be read to and this book is just the book to do it! It is a heart melting tale of one spunky girl and her wish to have somewhere to call home.