Books by Amy Schor Ferris

A GREATER GOODE by Amy Schor Ferris
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 1, 2001

Although her mother deserted Addie Goode when she was three, the 12-year-old now thrives under the care of her lawyer father and their housekeeper Jessie, whose pithy aphorisms—"polite breeds polite" and "walkin' away from evil is just as evil"—have helped form Addie's values. Addie makes friends with a pregnant young runaway who appears to be involved in an abusive relationship, and many of Addie's unresolved feelings about abandonment resurface. At the same time, Addie learns that her best friend Luke will be away most of the summer attending a program for gifted students and that her father wants to remarry, causing her to deal with her issues around love and loss. Addie sorts out her confusion in the end as implied by the title. Colorful characters thicken the plot: Luke's ex-hippie parents are separated but spend every Saturday night together trying to work things out, and mean Miss Sinclair hires Addie's father to sue her ex-companion Freda for galimony but helps Addie in the end by providing information about the runaway's whereabouts so that she can be reunited with her dying mother. Addie is a complex girl: she does poorly in school, prefers looking at the pictures in magazines to reading, and goes through the letters of the alphabet one by one to remember things that escape her memory. Her easy-to-like voice has a casual southern tone—"After school, me and Luke, we went to the hospital"—that reveals that she and her father lived in Georgia before their current move to rural Pennsylvania. The many references to training bras for Addie's growing "titties," the characteristics of a good kiss, and menstruation, may give this more girl appeal than the cover might indicate, but boys who hang in there will learn plenty about friendship, loyalty, and family love. (Fiction. 10-14)Read full book review >