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***Girl Coming In For a Landing

A Novel in Poems

by April Halprin Wayland

Illustrations by Elaine Clayton

Reviewed October 15, 2002.
Alfred A. Knopf, New York, 2002.  134 pages.
Winner of the Myra Cohn Livingston Award for Poetry.
Available at Sembach Library (JF WAY)

This “novel” is a series of poems expressing a teen’s thoughts and feelings as she goes through her tenth grade year.  There’s a tiny thread of plot and recurring characters.  Mostly, it’s a fun, light look at what it’s like to be a teen.

The poems aren’t bad at all.  The author didn’t make them worse to make them sound like what a teen would write.  There’s a nice variety, and there are some that make me feel, yes, that’s how it is, I feel the same way.

I liked the way she followed a sweet poem about her sister with a poem about Monopoly that talked about “the dice / That my sneaky, scheming sister gets to toss out twice.  They rattle in her piggish fist, then spill across the board / My mom and dad and I watch as she adds to her hoard.”

I think that this book will rightfully be popular with teen girls.  It’s a fun variation from the typical novel.


Copyright © 2003 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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