FICTION

The Collected Works of Gretchen Oyster

Tundra. Sept. 2019. 188p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780735266216; ebk. ISBN 9780735266223.
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Gr 5 Up–Ever since his brother Jackson ran away, Hartley Staples has a hard time getting interested in anything. His friend Zack wants nothing to do with him anymore and walks away whenever he tries to talk to him. His parents and siblings are barely holding it together. When Hartley finds a postcard that seems to speak directly to him and what he’s going through, he becomes fascinated. He soon spots another and becomes obsessed with finding out the identity of whoever created them. Who is G.O., and why are they creating the postcards? Will he find a topic to do for his final project and pass middle school? Told through alternating points of view, readers will relate to the characters and their struggles to fit in and find peace with themselves. The plot is well- developed and easy to follow. Characters are realistic and engaging, and authentic postcard illustrations add color and depth to the story.
VERDICT Recommended for library collections where realistic fiction centering issues of family, friendship, and self-discovery are popular

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