Friday, January 22, 2010
Finally by Wendy Mass
Publication Date: March 2010
Paperback, 304 pages, Ages 8-12
My husband smiles as he hears the ruckus coming from my daughter’s room. She and I are lying on her bed, howling with laughter, tears running down our faces. And so it was every night as I read Finally by Wendy Mass to my 8 year-old daughter. Needless to say, we have become instant fans of this new to us author.
The story is about Rory Swenson who upon turning twelve has a wish list of things she is now allowed to do and has wanted to do for so long, such as getting a cell phone, drinking coffee, staying home alone, getting her ears pierced, and shaving her legs. Even as I write this, I cannot help giggling as I remember each incident that happens as she asserts and tests her newly acquired independence.
Rory is a sweet, down-to-earth girl, and my daughter and I liked her immediately. I also liked the “strict” parents who were understanding, loving, and had a sense a humour. We easily related to Rory and her family. And the book’s message is a good one: Maturity doesn’t necessarily come when one hits a certain age, twelve, in this case. Rory is told by a mysterious older woman at the beginning of the story that, “You won’t get what you want, until you see what you need.” The meaning of this becomes clear at the end of the story. I won’t say more, only that it’s a great book that uses humour to deal with the issues that all young tweens and parents struggle with—autonomy, growing up, and embracing those developmental milestones.
This is an excellent mother/daughter book to read together or for a book club. We both didn’t want this book to end, relishing the bedtime reading we knew would bring pleasure and laughter. My daughter is hoping for a sequel. I think I will just go out and get her another Wendy Mass book, and give it to her as a gift.
Disclosure: Thank you to Nikole from Scholastic Canada for sending us this book for review. I was not compensated in any other way, nor told how to rate or review this product.