Synopses & Reviews
A girl, a bike, a dog, and a near-impossible quest are the makings of this vibrant juvenile novel by celebrated children's book illustrator Cynthia Nugent. After the death of her mother, ten-year-old Francesca arrives on a Greyhound bus to live with her failed-musician father, Ron Rudderless. Despite his best intentions, kind but bumbling Ron can't quite bring himself to be a responsible parent, leaving Frankie mostly on her own. Her only friend in her new town is the elderly blind lady next door, Augusta. When social services gives Ron an ultimatum to clean up his act or lose his daughter, Augusta decides to take matters into her own hands. She sends Frankie on a quest to find a lost family heirloom while she helps Ron make a real home for Frankie. To help Frankie, Augusta gives her a dog and a magic bike called Hippogriff. On her journey, Frankie at last gets to experience the joys of an ordinary childhood — riding a bike, being out in the country, and making friends. Cynthia Nugent combines quirky magic with realism in this novel for middle readers about the power of creativity — and the thrill of owning your own two wheels.