Turtle in Paradise (Random House Books for Young Readers, 2010) by Jennifer L. Holm just won a Golden Kite (an SCBWI award from her peers) in fiction for her historical middle grade novel and is one of the Newbery Honor books this year. Oh, how I love it when worthy books win awards!
Inspired by her grandmother's stories, Jennifer writes a humorous book with adventure, buried treasure, strange relatives, crooks, and one smart girl.
It's 1935, and when Turtle's mom gets a job as a housekeeper for a lady who doesn't like kids, 11 year old Turtle is sent to live with her aunt. Not only does this New Jersey girl have to deal with a new place (Key West, Florida), but her 3 boy cousins as well. The 2 older ones are part of the Diaper Gang--they get paid for babysitting and their secret diaper rash cure. The littlest one keeps running around without his pants. And that's just a small taste introduction to this story.
Listen to the first line and hear Turtle speak for herself: "Everyone things children are as sweet as Necco Wafers, but I've lived long enough to know the truth: kids are rotten."
Jennifer L. Holm previously won a Newbery Honor for My Only May Amelia, which after ten years now has a sequel, The Trouble with May Amelia. Woo Hoo! Read more here.