April 25, 2011

Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool

Twelve-year-old Abilene Tucker has been left by her father in Manifest, Kansas under the care of an old friend named Shady, as he works on the railroads in 1936. Abilene finds the town curious, but boring...until she finds a cigar box, filled with mementos and letters. Who is this spy called Rattler? Who are the letters from? What is the significance of these objects? And, why did her father leave her here and what is his relationship with these people? The mystery is what drives this story that is told in two time periods, Abilene's present, and the period of the mystery person's box, World War I.

Honestly, I didn't enjoy the book's start. It was a too sweet, rural America, historical fiction. Then the story grew on me and I realized the simple apple pie I was reading was far more complex than it first appeared. This is a story that you savor slowly; one that gets more interesting as it develops, and brings a huge reward at the end.
Reed Reads Score: 4

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