Maybe a Mermaid
Maybe a Mermaid
Publisher's Hardcover14.44
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Annotation: When her mother, who sells Beauty & the Bee cosmetics and drives a Beemobile, surprises soon-to-be a sixth-grader Anthoni with a trip to the Showboat Resort, Anthoni plans to finally make a "True Blue Friend."
Genre: [Fantasy fiction]
Catalog Number: #181464
Format: Publisher's Hardcover
Copyright Date: 2019
Edition Date: 2019
Pages: 277 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: 0-374-30642-7
ISBN 13: 978-0-374-30642-7
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2018020371
Dimensions: 22 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Eleven-year-old Anthoni Gillis ("Gills") and her mother, Carrie, have had a clear plan, complete with action steps, for years: work diligently up the Beauty & the Bee multilevel marketing ladder to Queen Bee, whereupon they will finally visit Carrie's childhood lakeside vacation spot, the Showboat Resort. When things don't work out as planned, they decide to head to the resort anyway and regroup. They find the resort in a shambles and out of use, and reluctantly rent a cabin from the eccentric elderly owner, Charlotte Boulay. Just when Gills resigns herself to a summer of disappointment, she finds evidence that Charlotte may actually be the famed Boulay Mermaid from her family's bygone vaudeville act. As Gills gets to know potential true-blue friends who are staying at the lake, she finds surprising common ground and develops a genuine bond with Charlotte, too. This impressive debut ultimately settles in realism with a refreshingly mischievous wink. An offbeat, earnest novel for those who believe in magic and those who wish they did.
Kirkus Reviews
When her mother's magical summer plans for them dissolve, a preteen learns that living is less about planning than making the most of the moment.Eleven-year-old Anthoni Gillis doesn't just have a nontraditional name. She's also had a nontraditional upbringing, crisscrossing the country with her single mother as she recruits workers via a pyramid scheme for Beauty & the Bee, a cosmetics company. Anthoni has always believed that "Positive Thoughts Attract Positive Results" and followed her mother's many work affirmations until her mother takes her to The Showboat Resort at Thunder Lake for the summer. Once a place of nostalgia for Anthoni's mother, the resort now sits in disrepair. Anthoni's disappointment causes her to question her relationship with her mother for the first time in this debut novel that captures both the hopes and disillusionments of growing up. The goal-driven girl believes if she can turn popular Maddy, a former companion and now Thunder Lake resident, into a "True Blue Friend," as the Showboat postcard promises, she'll solve her problems. Could Charlotte, once known as the Boulay Mermaid and now Showboat's eccentric owner, be an actual mermaid and the secret to her success? DJ, who's living nearby with his aunt while his father recovers from depression, helps Anthoni realize the truth about friendship. The light mystery balances the story's bittersweet realism and rushed, concluding turn of events. All characters are presumably white.Readers dive not only into Anthoni's maturation, but into her resiliency. (Fiction. 8-12)
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ALA Booklist (3/1/19)
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
Kirkus Reviews
Word Count: 54,322
Reading Level: 4.6
Interest Level: 3-6
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.6 / points: 8.0 / quiz: 501926 / grade: Middle Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:3.8 / points:12.0 / quiz:Q76780
Lexile: 660L

A summer romp full of mystery, new friends, and maybe a mermaid! Eleven-year-old Anthoni Gillis is not the kind of kid who believes in fairies, unicorns, or even the word "maybe." She's more of a comic-books girl. So when her mom brings her to Thunder Lake for a summer at the Showboat Resort, she doesn't believe the local rumors about the Boulay Mermaid. Anthoni has bigger fish to fry. She's always wanted a True Blue Friend. But it's been hard to find one, since for the past five years she's been bouncing from town to town, helping her mother sell Beauty & the Bee cosmetic products to keep them both afloat. This summer will be different, though. Anthoni has a plan--a foolproof checklist for making lifelong friends! There won't be any maybe s this time. But as she grows entangled in local gossip, and her mother stretches the truth, Anthoni must decide if she'll "stick to the plan," like always, or dive into a summer full of extraordinary possibilities. Josephine Cameron's energetic and heartfelt debut raises timeless questions about truth, lies, and the hope that grows between them.

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