Category Archives: * Not recommended

The Importance of Wings by Robin Friedman

Charlesbridge, 2009     ISBN: 1580893309

Nothing is right anymore: Roxanne’s mother is in Israel caring for her sick sister, her father is working long hours as a cab driver, and she is left looking after her little sister, Gayle.

Meanwhile, fitting in at middle school is no easy thing, especially without the right clothes and the right hairstyle: the difficult to construct “wings” of the title.

When a new girl moves into the cursed pink house on her street, life becomes more interesting. Liat is also Israeli; she is also motherless, although permanently so, her mother having been killed in a bombing in Israel; she’s tough; and she doesn’t care about what other kids think of her.

Liat puts Roxanne’s troubles into a new light, and Roxanne matures under Liat’s influence.

Unfortunately, the setting of the book in the 1970s, with the TV shows of those years so often mentioned, will not draw in today’s young readers, and the concept of a house with a curse (which does play out once again at the end of the book), is a plot device more suited to a younger audience.

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Filed under * Not recommended, Grades 5 - 6