Note: I love Sharon Creech. She is one of my favorite authors. If this book sounds wrong for you, try another of hers. You will not be disappointed, I've never been.
What I liked:
- Sharon Creech hides a secret about Sophie so well that when it started to come out, I had to re-read the last forty pages to see what I'd missed.
- The chapters all have names, not just chapter 7.
- The juggling Cody teaches the crew becomes something more. It becomes a better way for Sophie to escape unpleasant situations.
- The chapters alternate between the voice of Sophie and the voice of Cody. This format makes the book move real fast.
- Even while writing the two voices, Creech keeps them clear and different.
- Sophie asks the best and most simple questions to the adults. Why didn't you marry her if you love her? Why don't you work at a job you like? Why can't I be different?
- Not all female writers are good at writing for a boy, and not all male writers are good at writing for a girl. Sharon Creech is good at writing for a boy. Cody is very believable. His words sound like a ten year-old boy.
- Cody reminds me of my younger brother, Jo. Usually in trouble, always talking, maybe not that interested in school, but very good with people. It's Cody's patience and love that help Sophie overcome her past and unlock her memories. He even learns how to handle the snotty cousin Brian. Like Jo, he occasionally says very profound and insightful things, for a goofball. Here is his theory on people, pg. 226
What I didn't like:
- I know that Creech's work is often set in very beautiful and well described settings. The Wanderer is. But I just can't relate to a childhood of rowing and boating and sailing and swimming in natural bodies of water. It may be because I've lived all my life land-locked, but it was hard to imagine.
- The kids and uncles are always throwing around words like aft, fore, trysails, and gale. Since I've grown up land-locked, I don't know much about sailing or coastal weather. It made some parts a little hard to follow.