27 Magic words by Sharelle Byars Moranville
Publisher: Holiday House Books
Release Date: July 30, 2016
Summary: An irrepressibleten-year-oldwith a vibrant imagination must reconcile her fantasies with reality in this beautifully written novel about facing the future.
Although Kobi s parents sailed into a storm at sea five years ago, she knows they are alive. If she says Avanti! she can see them. Now that her life is being turned upside down again, she will need the magic words her mother left behind more than ever. Instead of living with wealthy Grandmamma in Paris, Kobi and her sister will temporarily stay in Des Moines, Iowa. There, the girls will, as Uncle Wim puts it, live like normal kids for a change. To fit in at her new school Kobi tells lies that soon catch up with her. In a heart-wrenching climax, she must confront not only the untruths she has told others but the stories she has made herself believe. Only then will she be able to grieve for her parents and move on with her life.
***I requested this ARC from the publisher, this in no way influences my thoughts***
Because of her parents (one a writer, the other a magician) Kobi has grown up learning that words are magic!
But a few years later, they go on a boating trip and never return!
Kobi and Brooke adjust to their life in Paris. But gets turned upside down when her grandmother tells her and her sister Brooke they will be living with their Uncle Wim in Des Moines, Iowa.
Staying there until Christmas, both Brooke + Kobi must adjust to their new life.
Brook suffers as well from not only the loss of her parents, but from constant worry over her sister Kobi by making herself feel safe through obsessive compulsive behaviors!
So she turns to the 27 Magic Words her mother wrote to her on post its some years ago to comfort her in difficult situations from learning about her grandmother’s illness, adjusting to her new school & older sister becoming more independent + facing the truth of the whereabouts of her parents.
But one special word “Avanit!” gives her the opportunity to see her parents on a small island, where she believes they are stranded and finding a way to come home!
The writing style is whimsical and delivers a certain magic but never takes the reader out of the story. The plot keeps the reader connected not only to Kobi’s journey from beginning to end, but also all the main/supporting characters that are written with such depth.
The true magic of this novel is not only through the rich characters and the beautiful writing style, but also the captivating plot that discusses grief, family, and the trials and tribulations of growing up!