After the death of her mother, seventh-grader Serena finds herself facing the day-to-day challenges of caring for herself and her younger brother, Henry, all while attempting to lead a normal pre-teen life.
Seventh-grader Serena Shaw is trying to keep up at school while rehearsing for the lead role in the spring musical and dealing with a father so "blue" he is nearly catatonic. With the aid of a not-so-secret admirer, as well as a growing sense of self-confidence, she faces the challenges of caring for herself and her ball-of-charm younger brother—all while attempting to lead the life of a normal pre-teen.
Readers will be drawn into this convincing portrait of a vivacious young person who is on a path to discovering that taking on responsibility sometimes means finding the best way to ask for help.
In this coming-of-age tale, Jones creates a moving portrait of a girl forced by her mother's death and her father's incapacitating depression to accept adult household and child-raising responsibilities. Whether making afterschool arrangements for her younger brother, Henry; rehearsing for her role in the school play; handling laundry, shopping, and cooking; or finding time for homework, seventh-grader Serena responds with grace, fortitude, and humor to her challenges until, incrementally, they begin to overwhelm her. Jones (Finding My Place) offers a harrowing depiction of depression as witnessed and comprehended through young eyes, the suspense centering on whether Serena will recognize the gravity of her father's illness in time to seek help. Complex relationships with friends emphasize Serena's exposure to a wide range of social choices. Visual and dramatic arts figure highly: singing provides Serena with her one trusted mode of self-expression, while the novel's title refers to Henry's painting of Serena, which creates a turning point moment. Jones leaves readers with a sense of hope, though it's clear Serena and Henry's problems are far from over. Ages 10 14.
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The Touching and Magnificent Silhouetted by Blue
Silhouetted By Blue is a very touching and enjoyable book. I believe it shows a new way to grief, as it shows Serena having to take care of things at home, taking care of her little brother, her grades, the play, and her huge crush on Elijah, all on top of her father's deep depression stage. She really shows young readers how much they should appreciate their families and how have the courage to ask for help.