Operation Yes

RedReviewStarGr 5—7—Jessica Almasy's performance of Sara Lewis Holmes's contemporary tale (Arthur A. Levine Books, 2009) about sixth grade students living on a North Caroline Air Force base further enhances an excellent novel. Their beloved teacher, Miss Loupe, with her spiky hair and tattoo, loves improvisational theater and has taped a square "stage" on the classroom floor. Miss Loupe also shares with her class her love of art and her love for her brother, Mark, who is serving in Afghanistan. Bo and Gari, cousins brought together in school through the circumstances of war, work together with their classmates to support Miss Loupe when her brother goes missing in action. The students unite and start a fundraiser that becomes an effort to help all the injured troops. Almasy's varying inflections and use of distinct voices for the characters immediately draw listeners in, and she does an excellent job of portraying the wide range of emotions experienced by Holmes's well-developed, believable characters. A wonderfully crafted story.—Cathie Bashaw Morton, Millbrook Central School District, NY

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