Monday, February 2, 2009

100 DAYS AND 99 NIGHTS- Alan Madison

Esmerelda (Esme)  Swishback McCarther is a second grade girl who has a little brother, Ike; a biggish brown dog, Napoleon; and a "bedzoo" of stuffed animals that she rearranges alphabetically every morning (boy, do I wish this child lived at my house!) Each chapter begins with the story of one of these stuffed animals. 

Esmerelda's dad, August Aloysius McCarther the third, is a sergeant in the U.S. Army, as was his father, and his father's father. Inevitably, he is sent on a tour of duty (100 days and 99 mights) and Esme and Ike, along with their mother, try to hold down the fort at home. 

 Madison does a masterful job capturing the feelings of Esmerelda and her brother, "The first days were easier for me…But then, as the days began to fall like raindrops, I couldn't keep running between them and pretending I was not getting wet. So, as each day got easier for Ike because he had gotten used to being soaked, it got worse for me. Soon I was drenched and shivering…"

100 DAYS AND 99 NIGHTS is one of those books you want to have around, well, just because you never know when a kid might need it. 

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