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The Center of Everythingby Linda Urban
Synopses & Reviews
Sixth-grader Ruby Pepperdine has always been good at figuring things out. Good at figuring out what to say to the school nurse, and how not to get called on in class when she doesnt know the answer. Good at figuring out how not to cause trouble, and how to keep everything just the way its supposed to be. Now Ruby has figured out how to write the winning essay for the Bunning Day Essay Contest, celebrating town founder Captain Bunning, the inventor of the donut hole. Shell read her speech when her whole New Hampshire town comes out for the Bunning Day parade. Yet it hardly seems to matter, because nothing else is the way its supposed to be at all, and Ruby cant figure out how to make it right. Lucy, her best friend, is mad at her. Nero, her new friend, might be mad at her, too. And Gigi, her beloved grandmother, passed away before Ruby figured out what Gigi was trying to tell her. Now Ruby just feels as though shes underwater, unable to find the center of the circle where everything makes sense. Does her birthday wish have something to do with it? Can Ruby Pepperdines wish make things right again?
"The poignancy that characterized Urban's A Crooked Kind of Perfect and Hound Dog True is also present in this novel about wishes and regret. Months after her grandmother's death, 12-year-old Ruby Pepperdine composes a winning essay honoring her New Hampshire town's namesake: Capt. Cornelius Bunning, inventor of the doughnut. Ruby should be ecstatic that she gets to read her essay in front of the whole community on Bunning Day, but her mind is on other things, especially how she didn't listen to her grandmother's final words before she died. Ruby thinks that maybe if she wishes hard enough, 'everything will be back to how it is supposed to be,' but making a wish the right way is a tricky business. In a story whose winding plot echoes the doughnut shape that fascinates Ruby, Urban traces how Ruby discovers connections among dissimilar phenomena, including the nature of relativity, everyday sounds, and being part of a community. Ruby's large imagination and even bigger heart are beautifully evoked as the sixth-grader finds a way to keep the memory of her grandmother alive. Ages 9 — 12." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
From the author of the acclaimed A CROOKED KIND OF PERFECT and HOUND DOG TRUE comes a middle-grade novel about donuts, a birthday wish, and making things right with the ones you love.
Spring 2013 Kids' Indie Next List
For Ruby Pepperdine, the “center of everything” is on the rooftop of Pepperdine Motors in her donut-obsessed town of Bunning, New Hampshire, stargazing from the circle of her grandmother Gigis hug. Thats how everything is supposed to be—until Ruby messes up and things spin out of control. But she has one last hope. It all depends on what happens on Bunning Day, when the entire town will hear Ruby read her winning essay. And it depends on her twelfth birthday wish—unless she messes that up too. Can Rubys wish set everything straight in her topsy-turvy world?
About the Author
Linda Urbans debut novel, A Crooked Kind of Perfect, was selected for many best books lists and was nominated for twenty state awards. Her novel Hound Dog True received four starred reviews and was named a Kirkus Best Book of 2011. A former bookseller, she lives in Montpelier, Vermont, with her family.
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