Although Trisha started off liking school, things have been rough. Everyone at her school still thinks she is dumb because she had trouble reading. Trisha gets a break when she goes to visit her dad and grandma over the summer. She is excited when she convinces them to let her stay with them for the next year and go to a new school. Trisha knows this year will be better, especially because she already made a friend over the summer. The first day of school she is thrilled about starting fresh and waves her class assignment slip proudly in the air. Right away something seems wrong and her only friend won’t talk to her. Her friend tells her she can’t sit with her at lunch because Trisha is in “the junkyard”. It turns out that this is the nickname for her classroom and the other kids at school don’t hang out with the students in the junkyard. Trisha notices that everyone in her class is different in some way, but they are all kind. Being part of the junkyard is seen as a bad thing by the other kids, but not in the eyes of her teacher, Mrs. Peterson. The teacher explains to the kids that they are like junkyard wonders, each of them holding a special treasure. Mrs. Peterson sets out to inspire her students and reveal to them their inner magic. Will Trisha have a better school year? Can Mrs. Peterson get the kids in her class to see who they really are? Read this touching story to find out!
I have read many picture books by this fantastic author, but The Junkyard Wonders by Patricia Polacco was one I hadn't heard of before. I already connected with Trisha from Thank You, Mr. Falker, because I had trouble learning to read. I was so happy for her when she got to have a fresh start at her new school and my heart broke when things were rocky right away. I loved Trisha’s attitude throughout the story because she is open to making friends and she is accepting of others. I thought her teacher was out of this world and her passion for teaching and belief in her students was inspiring. There are so many wonderful moments in the book. I don’t want to give away how the story ends, but it gave me the chills and made me realize that every child and adult should read this book. I recommend it to people of all ages. The best part is that this is a story right from the author’s life. Patricia Polacco is Trisha and you will be rooting for her and the other junkyard wonders right from the start. I think the fact that the author uses events from her own life and the lives of her family members in her books helps readers to connect to them. Each one of her books has blown me away because of the story, but also because they are based on real events. If you are looking for a book that makes you cheer for the underdog and that will make you believe in yourself, then look no further!Has anyone else read The Junkyard Wonders? Or have you read another book by Patricia Polacco? What did you think? Stop by The Signed Book Hop to enter to win two signed copies of her books!
Happy Reading! ~L