Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Will Sugar Ever Be Home Again?

Sugar Mae Cole has to overcome so many things in life. Her father, whom she calls Mr. Leeland, is a gambler, and her mom must try to make ends meet. The one place she loves to be is school. Sugar’s teacher, Mr. Bennett, really inspires her. Her writing takes off while she's in his class, and it's an outlet that helps her to sort out her emotions. Sugar tries to appreciate life and thinks things will work out until her mother can’t pay their bills, and they lose their house. They move in with some relatives for a couple of weeks and then to a shelter. It seems family only wants you for so long when you are homeless. Now Sugar has to go to a new school and, most of the time, her mother needs mothering. Sugar has to act like an adult. Each day she thinks about how hard her life is, but she finds the strength inside herself to face each day. When Sugar’s mom has a breakdown and the police are called, Sugar’s life becomes even more uncertain. Thank goodness for Lexie and Mac who take her in as a foster child. Living away from her mom is a big change. Will Lexie and Mac prove themselves to Sugar? Will Sugar ever be able to live with her mom again? How will Sugar stay positive in the face of so much uncertainty? You must read this heartwarming story to see how everything works out and to learn to appreciate what you have in life. 


The wonderful Claudine from CarryUsOff Books introduced me to Almost Home by Joan Bauer. I am so glad I didn't miss it! What a story! Sugar is so full of positive energy that I wish I knew her and could help to shield her from the world. Not that she needs it, she finds strength from within. Still, she deserves to have a life with a lot less stress. Each day she tries to look for the positive and is thankful for the people who come into her life, no matter what lesson they teach her. Her dog, Shush, comes to her accidentally, but Sugar finds creative ways to take care of him. Shush sure does help those around him. I felt bad for Sugar that she had to grow up so soon. No child should know what it is like to be homeless or have to parent their parent. Her attitude inspired me. I also loved the thank you notes she wrote throughout the book. When I learned about her painting doors to make the world a brighter place- I wanted to paint my door! How fun! This is a story I recommend to kids in grades three and up. Adults will love this story, too. Without a doubt this is a book you don’t want to miss! I look forward to reading more from this author!

Has anyone else read Almost Home? Or have you read another book by Joan Bauer? We would love to hear your thoughts!

Happy Reading!
~L

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18 comments:

  1. Sounds like a really sweet story! And we can all use something upbeat--especially in this season :)

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    1. Hi Meradeth, Definitely! Thanks for stopping by : ) ~ F

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  2. +JMJ+

    For a second, I thought that Sugar was the adorable dog on the cover!

    Painting a door seems like a great reading-inspired DIY project. =) I'm not a crafty sort, but there are some books which make me wish I were.

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    1. Hi Enbrethiliel, I love the idea of painting a door. Thanks so much for stopping by to share your thoughts with us! ~ F

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  3. A shame that more and more children are having to deal with issues like the ones Sugar is facing. I only hope that they all have a Lexie or Mac in their life. This sounds like a heartbreakingly beautiful story, thanks for the recommendation.

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  4. Sounds like an inspiring reads with a positive message for younger readers! Thanks so much for sharing!

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    1. Hi Tracy, It is a shame. Thanks for stopping by to share your thoughts with us. It's always a pleasure to hear from you!

      Hi Heidi, It's a wonderful story!

      Hi Patty, It's a cute cover! Thanks for popping by today : ) ~ F

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    1. Hi Erik, It's a unique story- thanks for stopping by! ~ F

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  7. I haven't read this yet, but it sounds fantastic. I love when authors tackle such difficult subjects with heart! Definitely sounds like a winner - thanks for the tip :)

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    1. Hi Jemi, Me too- you can feel it in their words. Thanks for stopping by! ~ F

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  8. Poor Sugar! What an awful life for a little girl. It's so sad to know this really happens. I'm impressed to see the author tackling such serious issues. Entertainment is great, but books reverberate when there are real issues being examined. The book sounds great - good luck! :-)

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    1. Hi Lexa, It is sad when this happens, and it happens all too often. Thanks for stopping by! ~ F

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  9. What a sweet cover. The description makes me wish the best for those characters.

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    1. Hi Medeia, Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts with us. It's always lovely to hear from you! ~ F

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  10. So glad you liked this one, too! I particularly remember the scene when Sugar was so scared about being forced to move that she peed on the lawn. Felt so sad for her.

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    1. Claudine- I loved this one! My heart went out to Sugar throughout the book. What a great MC. :) Thanks for the recommendation! ~Stephanie

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