I’m experiencing so much cover love here…I can’t even. It’s so gorgeous.
Thank you Text Publishing for the review-copy! The Minnow by Diana Sweeney hits shelves on May 28th, 2014.
Tom survived a devastating flood that claimed the lives of her sister and parents. Now she lives with Bill in his old shed by the lake. But it’s time to move out—Tom is pregnant with Bill’s baby.
Jonah lets her move in with him. Mrs Peck gives her the Fishmaster Super Series tackle box. Nana is full of gentle good advice and useful sayings.
And in her longing for what is lost, Tom talks to fish: Oscar the carp in the pet shop, little Sarah catfish who might be her sister, an unhelpful turtle in a tank at the maternity ward. And the minnow.
The Minnow is a moving and powerful coming of age story with a whimsical element that belies the heartbreaking truth of grief and loss. Tom is a character you will never forget.
I totally admit! I wanted to read this book because of the swoon-worthy cover. There are other reasons, duh. Like, the blurb is interesting, it’s written by an Aussie author (go us!), and it won the Text Publishing prize in 2013. But I really just love the cover. So…how did my cover-judging go?
Before I launch into my list-tastic review, I do not apologise for the Nemo gifs. The Minnow is about water! Of course I need Nemo to help me review it.
The writing is gosh darn beautiful. I seriously can’t explain how beautiful the writing is. It’s dreamy. And soft. And very artistic. This can also be a downside, if you like writing that dives into events and action. After the explosion of my last read, I had a really relaxing time with The Minnow.
Diversity. Diversity everywhere. There’s a bit of a hue and cry for YA diversity these days. The Minnow fits the list! First of all: teen pregnancy. Then: strong grandparent characters, BFF that STAY friends, looots of sloshy water, and natural disasters. (There’s a flood. Not a spoiler, it says it in the blurb.)
Tom is our narrator and pregnant with Bill’s baby. (Tom is short for Holly…don’t, um…just read the book and find out why.) She’s only 14! This is scary, but quite incredible how it’s written and how Tom reacts. Now I’m not exactly sure how old Bill is, but at one point I think the book indicated that he was fairly old. Ew. Also the police are after Bill. I still don’t understand exactly what for.
Go away, Bill.
Then there’s the Minnow. Ohhh for the love of all things slimy, “the minnow” is what Tom calls the baby while she’s pregnant. It’s so stinkin’ cute!
The minnow sort of “talks”, too…um, okay. Keep up with me, I’ll explain.
There are lots of dead people in this book. I got confused at first, but then I loved it. I’m not sure saying “ghost” is the right way of putting it: but basically Tom is surrounded by the ghosts of her past. They discuss things. It’s really beautiful and really sad. As things are.
Plus the whole book is very wet. I like that. I feel like I just took a swim with the fishes.
And the ending? What. Just. What? I’m not even sure if I mean this in a good or bad way! JUST WHAT HAPPENED THERE?
It should probably be 3-stars, but the writing was just too beautiful and I was too busy swooning over baby Minnow and the cover. So it’s 4-stars. And I LOVE this book.
Cait has always loved the ocean and water and lakes. But not canoeing. She hates canoeing. And also she’s not really good at swimming. She can do a mean dog-paddle though, so watch out. Walking on the beach, though, equals intense awesome. Currently Cait’s admiring her writing boards on Pinterest instead of actually writing. Such is life.