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THE UNFINISHED ANGEL by Sharon Creech Kirkus Star

THE UNFINISHED ANGEL

By Sharon Creech

Age Range: 8 - 11

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-06-143095-4
Publisher: HarperCollins

A small village in Switzerland’s Italian-speaking region of Ticino provides the perfect background for this endearing contemporary fable, told in 44 brief, often comical chapters. When a young American named Zola comes to live in the house attached to the tower where an angel has sojourned for hundreds of years, things get lively. The angel’s narrative voice is earnest, often puzzled and frequently indignant. Full of mixed appreciation for and apprehension about human beings, it is filled with phonemic mix-ups, word coinage, inverted grammar and nonsense that soars and fizzes, giving the impression of a goodhearted and slightly zany transcendence. Helping a ragtag bunch of homeless runaways sheltering in a chicken shed becomes Zola’s project for the angel, while Zola’s father begins work on his dream of creating an international peace school. Everyone—the orphans, Signora Divino (the cranky widow next door), Zola’s father, even the incessantly barking dog—is on the way to redemption by the end. Brimful of grace and cheer; moving, funny and sweet—and begging to be read aloud. (Fiction. 8-11)