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MY ONE HUNDRED ADVENTURES by Polly Horvath Kirkus Star


by Polly Horvath

Age Range: 12 & up

Pub Date: Sept. 9th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-375-84582-6
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade/Random

Twelve-year-old Jane Fielding’s soul itches for adventure. Her life on the Massachusetts shore with her siblings and poet mother is rich with familial love, natural beauty and fresh shellfish, but she still longs to embark into the “know-not-what.” Her fervent prayers for adventure are soon answered when a disheveled man shows up for dinner and when, afterwards, her mother casually states, “That was your father,” as if to imply that Jane wasn’t, as she’d hoped, “conceived in the depths of a moonlit sea.” As the scales fall from Jane’s eyes, she struggles to make sense of a touchy-feely, “energy”-obsessed preacher, a purse-stealing fortuneteller touting “transparent poodles” (translation: transporting portals), and, most poignantly, a parade of possible fathers. Jane is a lovely blend of hopeful and compassionate, disillusioned and grumpy: “I pour more orange pop moodily into my cup and think about murder-suicides and wonder if they begin with too much food and fun and games.” Jane’s poetic, philosophical musings capture a child’s logic with an adult voice in this witty, wise and wonderful novel. (Fiction. 12 & up)