Rosetown Summer by Cynthia Rylant
Published on November 23, 2021
Reviewed by Elizabeth DeVincenzo
This sequel continues the story of 10-year-old Flora and her friends Yury and Nessy in the summer of 1973 in Rosetown, a small, quiet town in Indiana, where very little changes. Introverted Flora loves spending time reading with Yury in Wings and a Chair Bookshop and volunteering in the children’s room at the library. When Miss Merriweather, the owner of the bookshop announces she may be moving to Montana, Flora becomes upset. This character driven novel focuses on small events that can be very significant in a child’s life. The slow pacing of this slim novel reflects the time it takes place in, no internet, no video games, no cell phones, etc.- a slower, less-harried time. Flora is a very sensitive, kind, and likable character is this “feel-good” book. I recommend reading the first book in this series – Rosetown, even though Cynthia Rylant does give some back story to the characters in this novel, readers will get more out of the story reading both books. This novel is only 84 pages and would be a good choice for a reluctant reader. Even though the book takes place in 1973, there aren’t too many pop culture references of that time, so the book doesn’t feel dated, only the absence of modern technology lets the reader know it is not the 21st century. Children who are going through changes in their lives or are averse to change will find Flora relatable. I recommend this book for fans of realistic fiction and adults who are looking for a nostalgic escape.
Target audience- Grades 3-5