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Nuts [Kindle Edition]

Kacy Cook
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Sometimes even the smallest thing can change your life forever. A squeaking sound outside Nell's bedroom leads her to a baby squirrel abandoned in her yard. Nell and her younger brothers end up saving two wild squirrels that appear to be orphaned. With the help of some online research and a new friend, Nell learns how to care for the squirrels, but she also learns that she should not try to do this on her own. Still, if Nell has the time and devotion, why shouldn't she raise the squirrels? She loves them, and they need her —don't they? Nell is willing to do anything to keep her new pets safe, even if involves telling a few lies. Author Kacy Cook has crafted a beautiful, classic debut novel about love, family, and nature that young readers will never forget.

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About the Author

Kacy Cook was born in Columbus, Ohio, the second of six children. Her father was a federal agent, and her mother was an artist and dress designer. Kacy still lives in Columbus and has three grown children. She also has three cats.

Since attending Ohio State University, Kacy has worked in journalism and publishing. In addition, Kacy writes books for young people. Her interest in children’s literature began when she homeschooled her children. This is also when her interest in nature and wildlife began. She is a big fan of squirrels!

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining and realistic 18 Oct. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Thanks, Kacy, for an absorbing book. It kept my attention to the end.
It was realistic and scientifically accurate and to that extent I found it fascinating. However, the best quality of the book, in my opinion, was the tone, the voice, in which it was written. It had clear and simple, quiet, intimate, conversational style. Straight away, with no fuss, I was invited into the world of Greta, Jack, Charley, and above all of Nell, the narrator, and her Mum. What happened with Mantha and Jess was told in straightforward, well controlled narrative in which the weight of the emotion ebbed and flowed. On occasions the emotion was full and heavy, chokingly poignant, but the narrative carried on, calmly and serenely looking reality steadily in the face. Life is cruel as well as beautiful, and both aspects were conveyed. What happened was an emotional bath for an eleven-year-old, but told with a calm maturity. I liked the bleakness of the ending: it was real and it was true. Thanks, Kacy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars love it 17 Nov. 2014
By J. Cox
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
It's epic !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I think this is a great book because I love animals yay

I would recommend this book
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  49 reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, but for one issue if you're a fan of WFMU 7 April 2014
By Meir - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a charming book if you are forced into reading to a child (it's not as bad as a beheading, but for me, it's close). I had to find something to read to a friend's kid who wouldn't go to sleep without a story, so this is what I found. I actually didn't hate it and given that I'm a churlish sort, that's high praise.

BUT, if you are a fan of the dear, departed Best Show on WFMU (which should be brought back, if you ask me), this book will be very disturbing. The idea of reading a story about a squirrel who is portrayed as an innocent and lovable creature is shocking to the conscience of anyone who ever heard Gary the Squirrel on the Best Show. Squirrels can be funny (hilarious, even), but this book is pure squirrel propaganda to the extent it gives children the impression that squirrels can be your friend. Ask AP Mike. Squirrels will stab you in the back every chance they get.

However, if you are a poor soul who knows not of WFMU, and you have a kid who needs a book read to him or her, and you're not a dark soul, then you will absolutely love this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Squirrel Fans will Enjoy 11 July 2013
By Darena Shopz - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Nuts is a book about an 11 year old girl named Nell that with her two brothers finds two baby squirrels that have fallen out of their nest. They take them in and start providing care for them. The book is entertaining and well written but at times you feel as if you're not reading a story but an educational book on how to raise squirrels as it does get a little too into details of how to care for squirrels.

I also got distracted right away in chapter 1 when Nell and her brothers are at home alone while Mom is away. I thought that was a little inappropriate but maybe the author thought it was necessary for her storyline.

While the author's writing is quite good in format and flows easy, the story would have been more interesting if it didn't get so much into the details of raising squirrels. This states it is a novel and from that I expect the storyline but not the detailed nature information. When reading a novel, I want to be entertained, I don't want to actually know how to raise squirrels, I would get a nature book for that.

The book is appropriate reading for ages 9 - 13 and I think Nell being the lead character, girls would enjoy it the most.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Cute, but heavy handed. 9 Dec. 2012
By J.Prather - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Nuts is the story of Nell, an 11 year old girl who decides to raise two baby squirrels that have been abandoned by their mother. This is a story that's been told many times, and Nuts doesn't really offer anything new. Animal lovers will be drawn to the book by its cute cover and wild animal as pet premise, but I have a feeling that few will find it all that compelling. The prose is very straight forward and basic, offering little of the nuance or subtlety that could have really given this story some depth.

Still, readers will like the idea of having squirrels in the house that will sit on your shoulder and eat nuts out of your hand. At only 155 pages, this will be an easy read for upper elementary students. The author very clearly emphasizes that squirrels are wild animals, and the book does not encourage keeping them as pets. Nell learns a valuable lesson about being honest during her experiences with the squirrels, and even though it was delivered in a very heavy handed manner, it's a good reminder for kids about the importance of being truthful, and that hiding things from your parents can often have unintended consequences.

Nuts is full of information about squirrels, and I enjoyed its emphasis on the importance of getting in touch with nature. Nell and one of her friends engage in an interesting ongoing argument about the merits of hunting, and I liked the book's portrayal of a loving homeschool family. It was well done, if a bit cliché ridden. This is a book that will no doubt find many fans, but is not one that will be added to the list of animal classics. This is a marginal recommend for only the most devoted squirrel lovers in your household, and is best for grades 3-5
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nuts for NUTS 2 May 2013
By Word Lover - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Kacy Cook's novel NUTS is a lively, instructional chapter-book for readers aged approximately 8 to 12, offering a child helpful, interesting information on the challenges of raising a wild animal in captivity. Nell, the 11-year-old heroine, discovers a baby squirrel who has fallen from its nest. Guided by internet research and later, smart advice from her mother, she and her younger brothers go about trying to raise this orphaned animal, and soon enough, a squirrel brother.

Cook doesn't write down to her reader, and the dialogue and narrative is sharp, contemporary and educational. Who knew that a baby squirrel is called a "pinkie" or what a squirrel's nest looks like?

Adding a layer of interest, the family is home-schooled, and the story gives a vivid look into what that experience is like. Home-schooled kids would enjoy this, as would kids in conventional schools who are curious about this increasingly common experience.

The book's visuals are strikingly attractive, with an appealing yellow and blue color scheme.

This is a great book for a school library.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I Liked It But It Did Not Interest My 9 Year Old 9 Jan. 2013
By J. E. Nelson - Published on
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
On the surface, I felt Nuts had a pretty basic storyline. The main character, Nell, along with her brothers find a baby squirrel that fell out of the tree in their yard. They decide to rescue it and nurse it back to health. After clearing the plan with their parents, the children are to take care of it until the squirrel can make it on its own. Predictably, the kids raise the squirrels and when the squirrels are old enough, they are released.

While the storyline is basic, the book does cover a several topics and scenarios which could be beneficial to young people. For example, the book shows Nell, an 11 year old girl, taking responsibility of caring for the creatures. The task requires frequent feedings and getting up through the night. The topic of responsibility is discussed in this context and Nell does indeed carry through with her end of the deal. I liked how the book showed the work behind a novelty such as raising a wild pet.

One of my favorite concepts in the book was accepting differing viewpoints. The pseudo love interest in the story, Russ, is a hunter and a fisherman. This clashes with animal lover Nell's views on animals and nature. While Nell did not agree with Russ` activities, she eventually tried to understand his viewpoint and as such was able to appreciate his knowledge of nature.

The book addresses a number of other scenarios and how they play out. A few examples are death, lying to parents, breaking the law, sacrifice, and letting go.

I tried to get my 9 year old to read the book. While she glanced at it, the story really did not hold her interest and she did not get very far into the book.

Personally, I have to admit I did enjoy the book. I thought the language and storyline was simple and straightforward, much of what I would expect in a book written for the target age group. There is a large number of chapters which might be intimidating for some young readers, but most chapters are under 6 pages long.

If you have a child who has a love or fascination with nature, then this book might be worth trying. Without trying to give too much away, the book does deal with death. I am sure most kids in the target audience would have no issues with it, but I thought it was worth mentioning.
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