DESTINY by Vicki Grove


Age Range: 10 - 12
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At 12, Destiny Louise Capperson is the most competent member of her impoverished dysfunctional family. Her psychic-dependent mother is so sadly eccentric that when the family’s phone is disconnected, her response is “What do they expect people to do in emergencies? . . . Just hope a psychic happens to drop in right off the street?” Along with her mother, Destiny lives with her mother’s mean-spirited, disreputable boyfriend and her simply but sharply defined half-siblings in a small house bought with an insurance windfall gained when her brother’s “legs got crunched by the bad lady” in a car accident. To help make ends meet, Destiny seeks employment with Mrs. Peck, a retired teacher whose eyesight is failing but whose prodigious memory and ethical standards are blessedly intact. Stiff-backed yet courteous and respectful, Mrs. Peck introduces Destiny to the intellectually invigorating world of classical mythology and the concepts it embodies. But when she learns that Mrs. Peck may not be as perfect as she had imagined, Destiny slips up, then has to negotiate a moral crisis of her own making. Although Grove’s book has more coincidences than it can sustain and resolves too neatly, it’s full of lyrical prose, vibrant, gracefully detailed characters and a message of hope for the future. As Mrs. Peck tells Destiny, “To hope is to look yourself in the eye and realize that you’re capable of doing and being anything you really want to in this imperfect but fascinating world.” (Fiction.10-12)

Pub Date: June 1st, 2000
ISBN: 0-399-23449-7
Page count: 176pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1st, 2000


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