book review, Carol Federlin Baldwin, Chris Woodworth, Gingersnap, Ivy in the Shadows, MMGM, Road Trip, Shannon Messenger, Writing Dialogue

Ivy in the Shadows by Chris Woodworth — A Review and Giveaway

Thought for the Day:
“You must keep sending work out; you must never let a manuscript do nothing but eat its head off in a drawer. You send that work out again and again, while you’re working on another one. If you have talent, you will receive some measure of success – but only if you persist.”
~ Isaac Asimov~
Ah, there’s one more link on dialogue from the series on dialogue I referenced last week. That and a couple more to help you be productive.
Part III in the dialogue series of posts for which I posted I and II last time can be found by clicking HERE.  
Click HERE to see Neil Gaiman’s 8 Rules for writing. 
Pixar’s 22 Rules for Storytelling can be found by clicking HERE.  
The lucky winner of this week’s double giveaway drawing for Gingersnap and Road Trip is Helen!! (How about a round of applause?) Helen, I will get the books out to you this week.  
If you didn’t win, read on. I have another fabulous giveaway this week.
I, like many of you, sign up for drawings on blogs for book giveaways.  I was lucky enough a few weeks ago to have my name drawn on Carol Baldwin’s blog (cleverly entitled Carol Baldwin’s Blog) which you can find by clicking HERE. Carol teaches writing and has written a book about teaching writing for kids. Anyway, I received a hardcover copy of Ivy in the Shadows by Chris Woodworth, a middle-grade contemporary. I loved it and want to tell you about it.
Ivy’s stepfather, a musician, leaves.  Ivy’s mother, with two kids to raise, has to find a way to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. She sure isn’t getting any help from her husband, even though he is the real father to JJ, Ivy’s little brother. To Ivy’s complete embarrassment, her mother stands up in church and asks for help. Help comes in an odd way. A couple says they need to leave their son with someone while they go to find a house where they will be moving. Caleb, their son, is the same age as Ivy and, at least in Ivy’s eyes, something of an odd duck, and Ivy is not happy. But JJ is crazy about him. Having Caleb staying isn’t enough, even though they are getting a break on their rent, also due to Mama asking in church. Ivy’s mother stands up in church again and asks for a job. She gets one, but that means Ivy will have to take on watching JJ to help out. All this is going on while Ivy’s best friend, Ellen, seems to be pulling away and changing in many ways.
This story is very real in so many ways: the breaking family, the changing of friendships, the love and loyalty that can be found in the oddest of circumstances and relationships. Ivy’s voice, in this first-person account, is absolutely authentic. Not once did I doubt this was the story of a young girl and the telling of it her own.

Chris Woodworth

I love this book and think everyone who discovers it will completely enjoy every word. I’m going to offer here today my own gently-read hardcover copy of Ivy in the Shadows to one of you.
For a chance to win this charming book, please be a follower of this blog and leave a comment. If you are not yet a follower, it’s easy to become one. (I’m trying to get to triple digits on my followers, so…) Just go to the right hand side of my blog, find where it says Followers, and click the Join This Site icon. I’d appreciate it. Also, if you tweet my link or link it on your blog or share it on Facebook, let me know and I will put your name in the drawing an extra time for each one.
Don’t forget to stop by Shannon Messenger’s wonderful blog for more Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday links. Click HEREto find it.
On the book giveaway, this is for U.S. only. Sorry, but it would be too expensive for me to send books out of the country. But please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you. Remember, if you have trouble leaving a comment, click on the title of the post and it will give you just this post with a comments section on the bottom. Also, if you haven’t signed up by email, please do. Just look in the upper right-hand corner of this page, pop your email address in, and you will receive an email each time I put up a new post. Your information will not be shared with anyone.      

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