Monday, June 18, 2012

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: Walk Two Moons, by Sharon Creech--plus a giveaway!

For this week's MMGM I'm covering what many consider an absolute classic: WALK TWO MOONS, by Sharon Creech.

Here's how the publisher describes it:

"How about a story? Spin us a yarn." 

Instantly, Phoebe Winterbottom came to mind. "I could tell you an extensively strange story," I warned.

"Oh, good!" Gram said. "Delicious!"

And that is how I happened to tell them about Phoebe, her disappearing mother, and the lunatic.

As Sal entertains her grandparents with Phoebe's outrageous story, her own story begins to unfold—the story of a thirteen-year-old girl whose only wish is to be reunited with her missing mother. 

In her own award-winning style, Sharon Creech intricately weaves together two tales, one funny, one bittersweet, to create a heartwarming, compelling, and utterly moving story of love, loss, and the complexity of human emotion.

This is another one of the books I read while prepping for BEA (I was lucky enough to be on a panel with the lovely Sharon Creech--and she is every bit as amazing in person!) I have no idea how I missed it all these years, but I'm so glad I found it now.

And I'm not really sure how to explain what's so special about it--but I'm not sure I NEED to. I mean, check out some of the accolades it's racked up over the years:

Winner of the 1995 Newbery Medal
A 1995 ALA Notable Children's Book
School Library Journal Best Book of 1994
Winner of a 1994 Bulletin Blue Ribbon
A Notable Children's Trade Book in the Language Arts (NCTE)
Winner of the 1997 Heartland Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature 
Winner, 1995 Newbery MedalNotable Children's Books of 1995 (ALA)
1995 Notable Trade Books in the Language Arts (NCTE)
Children's Book Award for Longer Novels 
(Great Britain's Federation of Children's Books Groups)
Outstanding Books of 1994 for Middle School-Aged Teens (V)
Best Books 1994 (SLJ)
Bulletin Blue Ribbon Books 1994 (C)

So clearly this is an amazing book. Which is a really good way to describe it: AMAZING. The characters, the writing, the emotions--all absolutely breathtaking. Oh, and yeah, like many Newbery winners this one WILL make you cry. I sobbed. Twice. Even though I knew both things were coming, the way Sharon lays the feelings on the page is just so real and honest that yeah, I dare you not to cry. I DARE YOU.

But it's worth the tears, I promise!

In fact, to prove it, I'm giving away a copy to one lucky winner.

If you would like to enter, leave a comment on this post by 11:59 pm pacific time on Saturday June 23rd. I'll draw one random winner and post their names on Sunday, June 24th. International entries welcome.

For more awesome middle grade recommendations, check out these other MMGMs floating around the blogosphere.*
- The Mundie Moms are always part of the MMGM fun (YAY!). Click HERE to see their newest recommendations. And if you aren't also following their Mundie Kids site, get thee over THERE and check out all the awesome! 
- The lovely Shannon O'Donnell always has an MMGM ready for you! Click HERE to see what she's featuring this week!    
 Karen Yingling also always has some awesome MMGM recommendations for you. Click HERE to which ones she picked this time!   
- Pam Torres always has an MMGM up on her blog. Click HERE to see what she's spotlighting this week.   
- Author Claire Legrand joins the MMGM fun with an awesome new series called Middle Grade Memories. Click HERE to see Phoebe North discuss a book she loved growing up--with a GIVEAWAY!  
- Gina Carey is in love with MALCOLM AT MIDNIGHT. Click HERE to see why.
- Ruth Donnelly is raving about CAMO GIRL. Click HERE to see why she thinks you'll love it too.     
 - Michelle Isenhoff is cheering for THE ISLAND STALLION. Click HERE to learn more about it.  
- Susan Olson is championing PRINCESS IN THE PIGPEN.  Click HERE to see her review.    
- Natalie Aguirre is interviewing Lynda Mullaly Hunt and GIVING AWAY a copy of ONE FOR THE MURPHYS.  Click HERE to check it out.   
- Andrea Mack is dishing about THE HUGO MOVIE COMPANION. Click HERE to learn why.    
- Michelle Mason is back with a feature on THE DEAD GENTLEMAN.  Click HERE to see what she thought of it.
 - Gabrielle Prendergast is caught up in THE FREEDOM MAZE.  Click HERE to see her review. 
- Rosi Hollinbeck is celebrating SEEING CINDERELLA--with a GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for all the details. 
- Deb Marshall is spreading the love for THE MASK OF DESTINY--with an ARC GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for all the details.  
- Barbara Watson is featuring the 2012 Newbery winners! Click HERE to learn more about them. 
- Dorine White is enchanted by THE CABINET OF EARTHS. Click HERE to see what she loved. 
- Laurisa Reyes has an interview with author Tina Nichols Coury--plus a GIVEAWAY! Click HERE for details  

If you would like to join in the MMGM fun, all you have to do is blog about a middle grade book you love (contests, author interviews and whatnot also count--but are most definitely not required) and email me the title of the book you're featuring and a link to your blog at SWMessenger (at) hotmail (dot) com. (Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so I see it)

NOTE: I used to not have a cut-off time for adding links to the post, but with how insane my schedule is right now, if you don't email me by Sunday evening (usually around 11pm PST is when I put the links together) I can't guarantee I'll have a chance to add you. BUT, you are welcome to add your link in the comments on this post so people can find you!

*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen posts ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me ahead of time.


  1. I haven't read this classic either! Thanks for reminding me that I should.

  2. I never heard of this book before! This is great :D
    Thank you!

  3. I used to read this book over and over when I was younger. I absolutely adored it! Wonderful pick.

  4. Man oh man, good choice Shannon. Did many a book talk on this one back in "the day". Yep on the crying! Thanks for the linkage and the post!

  5. Sharon Creech is one of my favorite authors. I've never seen the cover that you show here though. No need to enter me to win - I've already got a copy.

  6. Ahh, worried about the tears o.O But ohh. The cover is so pretty :D Would love love love to win this book. <3 thank you so much for this giveaway. :)
    Love, Carina

  7. I haven't read this one -- I definitely need to catch up on my Sharon Creech. I've only read one of her books, and you sold me on this one.

  8. Sounds like an incredible book! Isn't it weird how some things manage to fly under the radar, and when you finally discover them, it's a major WTH moment?

  9. I love books that make me cry! I feel like I read this a long, long time ago, but it's definitely time to revisit it!

  10. I haven't read this yet either, so thank you for the chance to win a copy. And daring me not to cry? I will certainly cry; I know that already.

    I recently read all the 2012 Newberys as well as (I think) 2006's winner The HIgher Power of Lucky.

  11. how the heck have i never heard of this book? it sounds terrific, and who doesn't love a good book cry? :O)

  12. Sharon Creech is an amazing author. I always tell my students, you can't go wrong with Sharon Creech when they ask me "what's a good book?"

  13. Thanks so much for the chance. Sounds really good :)

  14. I haven't read this one yet!!! But if you say it's good, then that's a good enough recommendation for me :)

  15. I havent read this book. Please enter me in contest.

  16. I didn't know about this book and it sounds delicious. Thanks for running the giveaway. Fingers crossed.

  17. I keep hearing about Sharon Creech and I can't believe I've never read one of her books! I'll have to look around at the library. Thanks for the giveaway!

  18. I remember finding this book in elementary school and my librarian told me it was really, really good and honestly, it was amazing (as you said!) SO glad you found it!

  19. I helped teach my son's school literature group this past year and got to read this book for the first time. I had no expectations going in (other than the synopsis on the back and the medal on the front). As an adult male, my relation to the story and the character was a little limited, but I did still find myself really pulled into the story and really feeling for Sal. The writing and storytelling was stellar and I'm glad to have read it. :)

  20. Amazing is a *perfect* word for Walk Two Moons. I read it years ago, but memory dims... I think it's time for a reread!

  21. I haven't read this one, it looks great. Thanks for introducing it and for the chance to win.

  22. I was just at our local public library yesterday with my daughter. She was looking for something else, and I was looking for this book! There were three of her other books on the shelf but not this one. I'll be back....

  23. Oh, my this sounds like a must have. I love when an author weaves stories in the story. I hadn't realized she had a new one out. Thanks for the spotlight and a chance to have my own copy!

  24. the art is beautiful, it does sound *amazing*!

  25. I have a couple of copies of this one in my classroom (so don't enter me - share the love a little! :)), but I STILL haven't read it. Maybe this summer :)

  26. I read this one a while ago, and it surprised me to see you call it a middle-grade book--maybe I remember it being more mature because it was so sad!

    My favourite Sharon Creech book is Love That Dog. It's just little, but it's so sweet, and so perfectly done. (Makes me cry, too. But in a good way!)

  27. I would love to read this and I'm not afraid of crying.

  28. Oh, yes please! I've never heard of this book and it sounds ah-ma-zing!

    -Juli @ The Reviews News

  29. Sounds like a must read! Count me in for the giveaway!

  30. Why does everything I read nowadays make me cry? (And yes, I am lagging far behind on my reading of the classics.)

  31. I remember loving this book the first time I read it YEARS ago. I believe I read it immediately after I finished reading CHASING REDBIRDS (another one of Sharon Creech's books that I loved--I still have my paperback sitting on my shelf<3).

  32. Wow - you sure compile a lot of great information here, Shannon! Love this. xx

  33. I was so excited to see you featuring Walk Two Moons today! It's one of my favorite books. My sister got it from a book fair once, and I had to sneak it off her shelf whenever I wanted to read it. :]

  34. Love, love love this book!

  35. I hadn't heard of this one before, but your description sounds incredible. I'm on the lookout for fabulous mid-grade titles, since I have an early reader who I know will be a mid-grade reader before I know it!

  36. +JMJ+

    I read a lot of now-classic Newbery winners when I was a child, but this one managed to elude me . . . probably because I always mixed it up with Scott O'Dell's Sing Down the Moon, which I did read. =P Please enter me in this giveaway, Shannon. Thanks!

  37. This sounds like a wonderful MG novel! Please enter my in the giveaway, Shannon.

  38. Don't enter me becuase I have a copy but I wanted to comment. I read this book FINALLY two summers ago. Cried and cried but it was such an amazing book READ IT!!!

  39. Definitely something I'd love to read. Thanks for the opportunityy.

  40. I haven't heard of the book until now but I'm so glad I did. It sounds terrific and the kind of book both my MG reading daughter and I would both love.

  41. I'd love to read this! My library doesn't have it... And I'd share it with my 12-year-old cousin :)

  42. This is one of my favorites. So good and amazing.

  43. I love the new cover! Thanks for the giveaway!

  44. Shannon, I do love this MMGM feature! so many good books and great ideas!


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