HIGHLAND FLING by Kathleen Ernst


Age Range: 10 - 14
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Tanya MacDonald Zeshonski is 15, and divorce has led her mom to move to North Carolina from the Wisconsin Tanya loved. Tanya’s sister Nan, like her mother, is seriously into their Scottish heritage: The girls do traditional dancing and the whole family attends the Highland Games. Tanya fights fiercely against the whole heritage idea, bitter about her dad’s remarriage and taking refuge in her vision of herself as a documentary filmmaker. At the Games she runs into Miguel, who despite having very little Scots ancestry loves the bagpipes and is learning to play. There are a lot of strands here and Ernst balances them nicely for the most part: divorce, recovery and anger; what it takes to make a documentary, do a Scots dance or play the pipes; the haunting nature of history, culture and racial memory. Meanwhile, prickly, over-organized Tanya discovers the wild, strong women in her past. Readers will wish that she and Miguel had at least gotten to the kissing part, however. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: March 1st, 2006
ISBN: 0-8126-2742-3
Page count: 224pp
Publisher: Cricket
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 2006


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