DARLENE by Eloise Greenfield


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One small turnabout incident s-t-r-e-t-c-h-e-d out--and slightly enhanced, perhaps, by the heroine's being (wordlessly) confined to a wheelchair. ""Darlene wanted to go home,"" the text begins; and we see her looking mopey. ""Uncle Eddie said, 'Your mama's coming to get you at two o'clock.' "" Thereafter, as cousin Joanne devises one after another way to keep Darlene entertained, she keeps asking the time--but from her perceptible brightening we strongly suspect that, by the time her mama does arrive, she'll have changed her mind. And not only that but, when Uncle Eddie says, ""Darlene, you don't know what you want,"" she pertly replies: ""Yes, I do. I want to change my mind when I want to."" As a demonstration that handicapped kids (Darlene, it should be mentioned, is black too) are no different from anyone else, fair enough; but otherwise not much of anything--to look at as well.

Pub Date: Nov. 7th, 1981
Publisher: Methuen