Library Ed. Recorded Books/ Southern Voices Audio 2008
CS ISBN 9781436155472 $72.75 Nine cassettes
CD ISBN 9781436155496 $102.75 Nine CDs
Julia Gibson persuades listeners to see the world through the eyes of 11-year-old Ellie, who voices her disgust at the idea of kissing, curiosity about Kotex, and a mix of guilt and confusion over her parents' behavior. Who wouldn't be confused? Gibson's portrayal of Ellie's bipolar mother is chilling—high-pitched and brassy one moment, distraught the next. Ellie's father's tone is even and mature, but his actions belie those traits when he hires a flirty teenager to help around the house and they begin an obvious affair. Gibson portrays Ellie's parents' increasing strangeness in equal measures with Ellie's growing bafflement. Balance comes with Gibson's description of tender caretakers who underscore Ellie's innocence and hope. This normalcy keeps listeners engaged in the face of a preponderance of eccentric characters and bizarre behaviors. S.W. © AudioFile 2009, Portland, Maine [Published: APRIL 2009]
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