Charming and Memorable Book for Kids

I love it when I find a book like the one I have today, an absolutely charming and memorable book for kids.  I didn’t know anything about the story when I picked this one up and I was blown away.  Aven is this delightful, funny and optimistic young girl, who also doesn’t happen to have any arms.  Of course the cute boy she befriends has Tourettes.  But the amazing thing about this story is how much the reader will love these characters and be rooting for them.

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Title: Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactuscharming and memorable book for kids insignificant events in the life of a cactus

Author: Dusti Bowling

Target: Grades 4-8

Series: No

What this book is about:

Thirteen year old Aven moves from Kansas to Arizona so that her family can run a theme park. If you think the premise of moving to a new town may be cliche, think again. Aven is armless. Yup, her parents are firm believers that arms are totally overrated and that Aven can accomplish anything she sets her mind to. Finding new friends is tough when everyone is more interested in seeing how you eat your lunch with your feet, but Aven perseveres and becomes fast friends with a cute boy Collin. He has a little bit of a barking issue … did I mention he has Tourettes. Managing their discomforts, becoming friends and solving a mystery at the theme park keep them pretty busy and challenged in this story.

Why I love this book:

  • I love the positive way the characters approach their disabilities. Their issues make things harder, their challenges make kids gawk, their handicaps challenge their courage and sometimes defeat them. But they get back up, wrangle their sense of humor, recognize their individuality and persevere. Aven is a delight and her hilarious take on life is infectious to those around her.
  • If this book doesn’t encourage empathy in your kids, I don’t think anything will! These characters will leave the lasting impression that they are so much more than their disabilities and that they long to simply be accepted.
  • I appreciated that the book didn’t try to do too much. Aven isn’t elected class president at the end of the book but she has confidence in herself and has made inroads in to deepening her current friendships and starting to create new ones. Walls slowly come down, just like in real life.

Who this book is for:

Great for kids who like realistic fiction. Fans of Wonder or The Meaning of Maggie will enjoy this one.

Final thoughts:

Doesn’t the author have a great name? She was destined to write about life in Arizona!

To purchase this book:

Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus.  A portion of each purchase will go to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.