When Life Gives You Mangoes by Kereen Getten
Publisher: Pushkin Children’s Books
Price: Rs. 757 INR(paperback), Rs. 315 INR(Kindle edition)
Buy here: https://amzn.to/3ikvzAD
My take on the book:
Clara a twelve-year-old girl lives on the island of Sycamore with her parents, a place where no one new ever comes in, except the visiting tourists who find it ‘exotic’. A new girl arrived this summer, but Clara is skeptical of the first impression she would make as all the kids in the island assume Clara changed from last summer.
Clara seems to have forgotten everything that happened last summer, though the memories keep coming in as flashes. From dreaming to become a surfer and go surf the whole world, Clara is now dead scared to even put her feet in water. What happened last summer, did Clara really lose her memory of the past and how does the new girl Rudy change Clara’s life form the rest of the story.
The backdrop of the island, the close knitted neighborhood, the innocence of the kids, especially the simple and silly games they keep playing, the way they fight, form groups — every single nuance is captured beautifully by the author. The hill, sea, banana grove, the entire island’s picturesque backdrop is exquisitely described by the author making the reader yearn to go on a beach holiday.
Clara and Rudy’s pretend games are impressive as they replay a variety of scenarios. From page one the reader would be curious to know the reason for Clara’s lost memory and as the truth is unveiled it will shock the reader, the twist is the most unexpected, though there are very few clues dropped.
Middle grade fiction can be tricky, and the author succeeds in spinning a narrative that appeals to all age groups. The cover is extremely well-designed. Pick this one to read a warm story about friendship and loss.
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