When a mysterious man arrives one day on Orange Street, the children who live on the block try to find out who he is and why he’s there. Little do they know that his story—and the story of a very old orange tree—connects to each of their personal worries in ways they never could have imagined. From impressing friends to dealing with an expanding family to understanding a younger sibling’s illness, the characters’ storylines come together around that orange tree.
Taking place over the course of a day and a half, Joanne Rocklin’s masterful novel deftly builds a story about family, childhood anxieties, and the importance of connection. In the end the fate of the tree (and the kids who care for it) reminds us of the magic of the everyday and of the rich history all around us.
Praise for One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street
“Unfolding in one day’s time, the story recounts how secrets are revealed, curiosity is satisfied and wishing becomes hope because the spirit and ties of friendship and community are resilient and strong. Fully realized characters and setting definitely make this one morning on Orange Street amazing.”
–Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Fascinating and thought-provoking, the writing has a gentle cadence, richness in detail, and is charged with emotion. The book, like the oranges on the Orange Street tree, presents segments of life that are both sweet and tart and sure to satisfy."
–School Library Journal, starred review
“A touching story, beautifully told in multiple viewpoints.”
“Each chapter focalizes the third-person narration through a particular child, and the book weaves the singular tales into a larger story about a community that is pleasingly quirky but still believable. Readers and parents looking for some wholesome sweetness will want to make a visit to Orange Street.”
–The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
Pennsylvania School Librarians Association (PSLA) Young Adult Top Forty list
Rocklin (For Your Eyes Only!) sets her realistic, evocative novel, which features a warm and believable community of adults and children, in a California neighborhood that was once home to an orange grove. One very old Valencia orange tree still sits on an empty lot on Orange Street, and it's the focal point and gathering spot for a band of neighborhood kids: Ali, whose toddler brother is not recovering from brain tumor surgery; Bunny, whose mother travels by plane too often for Bunny's comfort; Leandra, grumpy at the prospect of a new sibling; and Robert, trying to establish himself as a magician. The story, told from each character's point of view, takes place over the course of a day and a half, during which the younger residents together with the elderly "Ms. Snoops," holder of the street's history worry about the significance of an orange traffic cone that has appeared in front of the empty lot. Fears about the cone rise and recede as the characters struggle with their individual anxieties, culminating in a confrontation that resolves several mysteries and brings out the best in everyone. Ages 8 12.
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Best book ever! So heart touching! Buy it. Read it. Love it!