Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

The Moon Over High Street

The Moon Over High Street

Spring 2012 Fiction
Ages: 8 - 10 yrs.
Author: Natalie Babbitt
Publisher: Scholastic
ISBN: 97805456376365
Hardcover Price: $15.95

Joe Casimir wasn't very happy about traveling to Midville to stay with Aunt Myra all by himself. But after Gran fell and broke her hip, he didn't have much choice. Gran wanted him to go, and she usually got what she wanted. Sometimes Joe thought he might like to make his own decisions, once in a while. But he had to admit that Gran's decision to send him to Midville wasn't bad. Aunt Myra turns out to be a kindred spirit; she asks Joe what he wants to do, instead of telling him all the time. And his new next door neighbor, Beatrice Sope, is not only pretty, she's easy to talk to. Joe is settling into his new life very nicely, when he meets the local millionaire, Mr. Boulderwall. And Mr. Boulderwall has some big plans for Joe-plans that might not match up with Joe's own dreams.

As she did in Tuck Everlasting, Natalie Babbitt has constructed an engaging and readable story around a fairly clear-cut moral dilemma. The characters are expertly drawn and appealing. That holds true for even the slightly villainous Ruthetta, who is actually my favorite. While it is immediately clear to the reader what choices the characters ought to make, it is also quite satisfying when they do display the requisite growth and gumption and come to the proper conclusions about what is valuable in life. Young readers who have enjoyed other Babbitt novels (a great many of them, in other words) will appreciate this new addition to her oeuvre.

Naomi Lesley   ©2012 Parents' Choice
Naomi Lesley taught middle and high school English for six years. She is currently in a doctoral program at the George Washington University, focusing on American young adult literature.

Share This