Determination Saves the Day

Today I have a book about a girl who will teach you that determination saves the day.  Vilonia is spunky, willful and a fighter who won’t let the death of her grandmother stop her family from moving forward.  Of course, all this involves a dog and some Little Debbie snack cakes which no meaningful story can be without.

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Title: Vilonia Beebe Takes Chargedetermination saves the day vilonia beebe takes charge

Author: Kristin Gray

Target: Grades 3-6

Series: No

What this book is about:

Vilonia’s grandmother died, and her mother is suffering through a period of depression because of her loss. Vilonia reads that pets can help with sadness and so begins her Great Pet Campaign. She brings home the library fish to prove she is capable of taking care of animals – he dies. She discovers a runt that needs to be adopted – someone else has put in the adoption papers. But Vilonia is a fighter, full of sass and attitude so she will not give up until everything is put right. Sometimes a massive personality is all it takes.

Why I love this book:

  • Dealing with death in kid’s literature can be touchy business, but this book handles the subject well. It teaches kids that everyone’s reaction is different, that family is there to support you and that time and attention can make things better.
  • I loved Vilonia. She is a Southern girl full of vim and vigor. Her expressions could probably fill up a book of their own. My favorite is when she describes her friendship with her BFF who couldn’t be more different from her as mixing toothpaste and orange juice. But it works. She also takes over her mother’s job while she is ill, writing obituaries, and they are punchy and memorable, to say the least!
  • Enjoyed the supporting characters such as Miss Bettina, the newspaper editor. Think the busybody from a southern town and you have her nailed. Oh, and you can’t leave out her affinity for Little Debbie snack cakes.

Who this is for:

Kids who like realistic fiction will enjoy this one. For some reason I thought of the book Pie by Sarah Weeks when reading this, so fans of that series should like this one.

Final thoughts:

Great wordplay in this story. I look forward to the author’s next endeavor.

To purchase this book:

Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Vilonia Beebe Takes Charge.  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.