Author: Ingrid Law
Number of Pages: 342
Puberty is a crazy time for most kids, but for the kids in the Beaumont family, it's downright hair-raising. Thirteen is the birthday when they receive their savvy, a special skill that's liable to cause havoc before they get it under control. For instance, Rocket Beaumont has a savvy for electricity, and has been known to blow out streetlights all the way down the highway. Fish Beaumont created a hurricane on his thirteenth birthday. Now Mibs Beaumont is turning thirteen, and she can't wait to see what her savvy is.
Then their dad gets in a terrible car accident. Left behind while Rocket and Momma rush to the hospital, all Mibs can think about is her savvy. Forget X-ray vision or super speed. She only wants the power to bring Poppa back.
Before she knows it, Mibs is off on a topsy-turvy quest across Nebraska in a pink bus with the preacher's two kids (each bothersome in their own special ways), two of her brothers, a Bible salesman, an ex-waitress, and a savvy that may not be what she thinks it is at all.
Why Did I Hype?: You're kidding, right?
Live-Up-to-the-Hype Score: 9/10
It's a hard thing to strike the right note with folksy, down-home style narration. Too much and it becomes a bad bluegrass song. Tossing a few of her own made-up words into the mix, Law manages to make Mibs sound real while at the same time creating a narrative that would be lots and lots of fun to read aloud.
I got a little annoyed at how long it took Mibs to figure out her true savvy, but forgave it because it's not stupidity, just denial. Then I squeaked with delight when Law discovered a way to use that savvy to save the day.
Ingrid Law captures the confusing, exhilarating experience of puberty with this adventure that encompasses themes of family, individuality, and identity.