Apple and Rain]
By Sarah CrossanBlurb: When Apple's mother returns after eleven years away, Apple feels whole again. But just like the stormy Christmas Eve when she left, her mother's homecoming is bittersweet. It's only when Apple meets someone more lost than she is that she begins to see things as they really are.
A story about sad endings.
A story about happy beginnings.
A story to make you realise who is special.
Genres: Juvenile Realistic Fiction
Publication Date: August 14, 2014
My Rating: 4 stars
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This book reminds me of one of my favorite stories, Becoming Naomi León. The situations are somewhat similar, and in both books, the character portrayals are stunningly accurate and, at times, heartbreaking.
Do you ever just want to give book characters big bear hugs and tell them that everything will be okay? Because I think that may have been the case with Apple and Rain--the characters, I mean, not the actual title. I loved both of them. Apple is a loveable and relatable main character. I loved how smart and mature she was for her age. Her poetry actually was really good. Rain, her younger sister, was a little sweetie as well. She is the epitome of a little sister; sometimes she was annoying, but at the end of the day she was a sweetie. However, she also has her issues. It's evident that she does not get the attention from her mother that a little girl needs, and the way it affects her just broke my heart.
Apple and Rain's relationship was sweet. It was very different to see this type of sisterly relationship, because Apple and Rain have not known each other for very long, and so their dynamics are a bit different the way they act around each other is different than most portrayals in middle grade or YA.
I wanted to slap Apple's mother at times. She was immature, she was flighty, and she really didn't put her daughters first. It was plain to see from the very first time she entered the story that she would not be someone I liked. I did feel somewhat sorry for her from time to time, but then she would go and ruin it.
Not only does Apple have to deal with her crazy mother, she also has to deal with a friendship possibly dissolving. I felt frustrated and sympathetic while reading this. It was so sad to see Apple trying to fit in but not being able to, and the need to hug this little girl increased.
Apple and Rain shows the story of a dysfunctional family and how it affects these two little girls in a very realistic way. Apple and Rain's homelife is less than ideal. But the story doesn't make it overly dramatic, like a made for television movie, and the ending, while ending on a happy note, still seems realistic in regards to the situation.
This is definitely a more mature middle grade read, which I always love, because I feel like they deal with topics in a serious way without a lot of angstiness. It's definitely a must read.