Louisiana’s Way Home (ebook)
by Kate DiCamillo
If you didn’t read Raymie Nightingale, you’ll still do fine with Louisiana’s Way Home, though it’s definitely easier to understand if you’ve read them in order. In this story, Louisiana has been traveling with her granny, and she is learning about life from Granny’s perspective (get what you can for free, win arguments, etc.). She is angry, because granny has taken her out of Florida, away from her friends, and she doesn’t understand why. They end up in a small town in Georgia, and her granny, having lost all of her teeth, has abandoned her emotionally. Louisiana is left with the stories her granny has passed on to her- that she is the orphan of trapeze artists, that her family has a curse, and that she can’t escape this curse. Louisiana meets a friend, learns the truth about her family history, and has to figure out who she is before life passes her by.
What I liked about this story was the repetition of words and phrases, often leading to themes or motifs, and the was things came full circle. I enjoy Kate DiCamillo as much as the next person. I can agree that she’s a skilled author and creative storyteller, but she never stood out as my favorite. However, this book blew me away. I loved the way she wrote Louisiana and how certain things were repeated throughout the book. This is up there on my list of 2018 books and it isn’t even out yet!
What I didn’t like about this story was how much anxiety and feelings of helplessness I felt for Louisiana. As an adult, a teacher, and a mother, I wanted to take Louisiana home. I feel like I have had students who would totally relate to her situation, and that makes my heart break for her and for the real people who could relate to this story.
Book 70 of 2018