Author: Tamora Pierce
In: Tortall and Other Lands: A Collection (Tamora Pierce)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Easy reading, Strong women
Format: Short story
5th sentence, 74th page: She told us to walk and talk quietly.
A departure from her normal tales, Tamora Pierce tells a story of a new den mother in a girl’s home. The tricks that the girls play, and the ways in which the mother is able to overcome their hostility are an adventure worth taking.
I can’t imagine being in a position that I am forced to spend my teenage years in a group home. But, it is a recurring idea in many stories, and the idea that one of my favourite authors actually acted as a housemother for young girls in this situation adds to the interest that I feel at such a horrible situation. However, although this story focuses upon these girls, it is not a sad, depressing or even pitiful story. Rather, this short story will leave you smiling and giggling at the not-so-nice antics of these young women.
The idea of testing someone to see if they can handle you isn’t exactly new. Neither is the sort of testing that disadvantage teenagers are willing to place people under. Actually, looking back at the way I was as a teenager, it’s not really new that teenagers of any kind will test a new authority figure within their lives. The fact that all of these little tests and actions actually happened just adds to the humour and genuineness of this story.
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