January 26, 2011 | goulds
Meet Turtle, a charming eleven-year-old who is in under no illusions about the ways of the world. It is 1935 and her "starry-eyed," romantic mother (who is always falling in and out of love with total losers) ships Turtle off to relatives in Key West, Florida because her latest housekeeping job does not allow children. Turtle is thrown into a radically different way of life amid boisterous cousins, eccentric adults, hurricanes, scorpions, and windfall fruit. She isn't allowed into her cousins' Diaper Gang (no girls allowed) to earn spending money, but has high hopes she'll soon be on Easy Street like Little Orphan Annie when she discovers a pirate treasure map. Full of humor, adventures, and a fast-moving plot, it is no wonder Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer Holm (author of BabyMouse and several other Newbery Honor books) was named a Newbery Honor Book in 2010. Read and enjoy!