by Cynthia Rylant
This book won the 1993 Newbery Medal for childrens literature. Like its author, the storys narratorSummer is her nameis growing up in
the hills of West Virginia, and shows signs of being a writer herself someday. But right now, all she cares about is keeping her family
Summer has good reason to worry. Her mother died when she was very little (her father is never even mentioned). She is passed from one group
of relatives to another, and never feels loved or wanted until her elderly aunt and uncle from Deep Water, West Virginia, take her in. Uncle
Ob is tall, thin, arthritic, and deeply devoted to his wife, May, who is plump, diabetic, and the kind of person who brings out the best in
people. Together they make the loving family Summer needsfor six yearsuntil the day May falls down in her garden and never gets up again.
Missing May is about a girl and an old man learning to go on with their lives after a shattering loss. It is about the searching for
unconditional love and a reason to live, and keeping it when youve got it. Its about letting someone you love go, and yet always having
them in your heart. Its not a very hefty book, but if you know people like Ob and May, or if you have experienced deep and lasting grief,
you may find that it hits hard and penetrates deep. I recommend keeping a pile of facial tissue on hand, about the same thickness as the
Ms. Rylant is the author of other childrens titles including The Heavenly Village, Gooseberry Park, and The Van Gogh Café.
Recommended Age: 10+
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