WHEN THE FROST IS GONE by Miriam Bat-Ami

WHEN THE FROST IS GONE

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 10 - 14
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 Natalie's best friend Tasha is African-American; Mr. Pettinato, an Italian-American, lives next door; Natalie herself is white. Poverty is the norm on their inner-city block, but neighborhood feeling abounds; and though surrounded by crime, the block itself seems like a haven. Then Natalie's mother shows up, possibly back from a drug-treatment program. Natalie's conflicted feelings about her frequent abandonment and her mother's promiscuity, as well as her distress when Tasha's family must move after their house burns and her attempts to find answers to her troubles while talking with Mr. Pettinato in his garden, all figure here. Unfortunately, Natalie's voice is inconsistent, ranging from poetic to one that is believably that of a 12-year- old with some Black English thrown in, while events jump confusingly back and forth in time. A pit bull who devours his puppies is frequently mentioned, but without elaboration. Is he a symbol? Of what? Bat-Ami shows promise, but she's tried to encompass far too much in this very brief novel. (Fiction. 10-14)

Pub Date: April 1st, 1994
ISBN: 0-02-708497-3
Page count: 80pp
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 1994




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