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July 20, 2009

A Certain Strain of Peculiar by Gigi Amateau

Thirteen year old Mary Harold Woods has had enough panic attacks, trying to stay invisible, and being called "the grossest girl" at school. If her mom won't move from Virginia back to their family home in Wren, Alabama, she'll just have to drive the 691 miles there by herself, to where the comfort of Grandma Ayma's arms, the steady routine of the farmhouse, and the cool shade of the Black Warrior Forest wait.

Days of hard work wrangling cattle under the summer sun and the tough yet tender advice of Ayma and her farm manager, Bud, guide Mary Harold in discovering the true strength of her own spirit. As she reaches out to befriend Bud's daughter, Dixie, a girl with a strain of peculiar all her own, Mary Harold overcomes her self-doubt, discovering just how powerful and surprising the bonds of friendship and family can be.

I liked this book a lot despite it being more middle grade fiction. I really enjoyed how much Mary grew throughout the book, it is really important for me to see a character grow throughout the book and not just stay in the same frame of mind.

This book had an original plot and great characters, that I really wanted to know. Mary was a likable character after she stopped feeling so sorry for herself. And Ayma was like the perfect grandmother!

One thing I did not like about it was that it started slow, and when she finally found out who her father was I totally called it from the start but overall it was a very good book!



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