Start reading Reaching for Sun on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here or start reading now with a free Kindle Reading App.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Colour:
Image not available
 

Reaching for Sun [Kindle Edition]

Tracie Vaughn Zimmer
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

Kindle Price: £6.39 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
* Unlike print books, digital books are subject to VAT.

Free Kindle Reading App Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.

To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition £6.39  
Hardcover £10.38  
Earn a Free Kindle Book
Earn a Free Kindle Book
Buy a Kindle book between now and 31 March and receive a promotional code good for one free Kindle book. Terms and conditions apply. Learn more

Book Description

Josie Wyatt knows what it means to be different. Her family's small farmhouse seems to shrink each time another mansion grows up behind it. She lives with her career-obsessed mom and opinionated Gran, but has never known her father. Then there's her cerebral palsy: even if Josie wants to forget that she was born with a disability, her mom can't seem to let it go. Yet when a strange new boy—Jordan—moves into one of the houses nearby, he seems oblivious to all the things that make Josie different. Before long, Josie finds herself reaching out for something she's never really known: a friend... and possibly more. Interlinked free verse poems tell the beautiful, heartfelt story of a girl, a family farm reduced to a garden, and a year of unforgettable growth.About the AuthorTRACIE VAUGHN ZIMMER's first teaching assignment was special education. She taught high school students with autism and middle school children with developmental and learning disabilities. She holds a master's degree in reading education and is the author of a book of poetry, Sketches from a Spy Tree (Clarion). She loves living in Waxhaw, North Carolina, with her family but will always consider Ohio her home. www.tracievaughnzimmer.com Reviews « "Josie's strength shines as she handles sadness and loss as well as recovery and progress. Readers living with a disability or trying to understand others seem like the target audience, but Josie's voice has a universal appeal," —Kirkus Reviews, starred review "Written in verse, this quick-reading, appealing story will capture readers' hearts with its winsome heroine and affecting situations." —Booklist "Garden imagery wends its way through this eloquent free verse novel. ...Zimmer infuses Josie's story with distinctive auxiliary characters." —Horn Book "An easy-reading drama that may particularly entice reluctant readers." —The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books "Readers of all levels will enjoy spending tim

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 205 KB
  • Print Length: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens; 1st edition (10 April 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005122YBA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,482,040 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Customer Reviews

5 star
0
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Courtesy of Teens Read Too 13 Mar. 2007
By TeensReadToo TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Josie Wyatt is trying to live as normal a life as possible, but there's one thing thats stopping her--her cerebral palsy.

Josie lives in a small farmhouse with her mother and grandma that is surrounded by huge mansions. Josie's mother is always at work and whenever she's at home she's always busy. Her grandmother loves gardening and never keeps any comments to herself. At school, everyone knows that Josie attends special ed, but when a strange new boy, Jordan, moves into the neighborhood, he never thinks of her as different, just normal.

At the end of the school year, Josie and Jordan have become close friends, and all Josie wants to do is spend the whole summer with Jordan--but Jordan has another plan, which is to go to basketball camp. Josie can't imagine a summer without Jordan and she doesn't know how to cope when her grandma has a stoke.

REACHING FOR SUN by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer is a wonderful novel full of free-verse poems that tell the story of a pre-teen girl dealing with the fact that she has cerebral palsy. I definitely recommend this book for any girls who love to read, and I guarantee that you will love it just like I did. I give it 4 stars!

Reviewed by: Kylie
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Poetic Growth 6 Mar. 2007
By Little Willow - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Reaching for Sun celebrates the growth of a young girl who flourishes over the course of a year, just like the flowers in her family's garden. As things change with the seasons, so does she, thanks in part to an unexpected new friend, her motivated mother, and her inspirational grandmother.

Josie was born with cerebral palsy, a condition which has affected one side of her body more than the other. She is a little shy and a little embarrassed to be in the special education class. She is very close to her mother and her grandmother, but hasn't any close friends at school.

Reaching for Sun is a verse novel told from Josie's point of view. Though Josie sometimes has difficulties expressing herself and speaking her thoughts, her voice on the page is full of strength. The book is split into four portions, marking each season and accentuating it with a famous quote. The floral motif is punctuated with illustrations of a flower slowly sprouting, budding, and opening on the bottom of the right-hand pages, creating a sort of flipbook, akin to that in What My Mother Doesn't Know by Sonya Sones.

A beautiful book simply told, I recommend Reaching for Sun alongside Rules by Cynthia Lord, Hugging the Rock by Susan Taylor Brown, and So B. It by Sarah Weeks, all well-written stories in which young characters and/or their family members overcome physical limitations and discover their inner strengths.

Take note of this book. Reaching for Sun has already been placed on my Best Books of 2007 list. I highly recommend it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for BOTH avid and reluctant readers 7 Mar. 2007
By J. Durango - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This novel in verse tells the story of Josie, a girl with cerebral palsy who'll win your heart on every page as she navigates the various relationships in her life, including her first real friendship.

This is a quick read with lots of white space, which should make it appealing and accessible for reluctant readers. At the same time, Josie's wry observations will provide plenty of food for thought for more sophisticated readers who will savor the garden imagery and Vaughn Zimmer's gorgeous writing.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cause I'm not like everybody else / I'm not like everybody else 11 Jun. 2007
By E. R. Bird - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Try this sometime. Read a book, put it down, and then wait a couple months. Let the distinct memories of the title ebb away. Your first impressions are tamed. Your fervor (of either the positive or negative variety) softens a bit. This method of reviewing is a way of separating the wheat from the chaff. If a book sticks with you for a certain period of time, it must be worth remembering. "Reaching for Sun" is worth remembering. A very gentle, warm, and welcoming book it feels like nothing so much as a gently scented bath. First time novelist Tracie Vaughn Zimmer tries her hand on a preliminary verse novel technique and, for the most part, pulls it off with aplomb. A title of the sweeter variety.

Josie loves so much. The woods behind her home. Her Gran and her mother. Nature itself. What she doesn't love is having to attend special education classes for her cerebral palsy. She's also not too fond of the fact that she doesn't have a real friend to hang out with. That is, before she meets Jordan. The only son of a busy businessman, Jordan sees the extraordinary that resides within Josie. Yet before too long Josie's life gets extremely difficult. Her mother's making her attend classes at the clinic that she simply does not want to attend. She fights with Jordan and she starts skipping clinic only to have her Gran collapse ill at home. Life can be cruel and life can be beautiful and Josie sees equal parts of either side.

The verse novel still has to justify its own existence with every book that uses its style. When you pick up a work of fiction written in verse you have to ask yourself, "Would this title be stronger or weaker if it were just straight prose?" Zimmer's advantage is that Josie lives a life that's best suited for poetry. The very world around her sings. To hear her say, "I'm the wisteria vine growing up the arbor of this odd family, reaching for sun," would sound trite or forced if the book weren't verse. Instead, it's just lovely. This isn't a case where the author wrote some sentences and then randomly chopped them up into lines. It's a book that flows to its own internal rhythm.

This isn't Zimmer's first book either, you know. She wrote a poetry title called, Sketches From a Spy Tree so her poetry credentials are well and truly in order. As for those amongst you curious as to whether or not Josie's cerebral palsy is treated with the proper amount of attention, Ms. Zimmer also happened to teach high school students with autism and middle school children with developmental and learning disabilities (as this title's bookflap explains). I, personally, have never had any contact with anyone with cerebral palsy, so maybe I'm not the best person to judge. Still, if you wanted to find books on a disability that was treated with the utmost respect, I cannot see that Zimmer does anything but impress.

It doesn't hurt things any that the language in "Reaching for Sun" is distinctly pleasurable too. The "poem" called "holiday buffet", for example, shows off the author's low key style. "On Christmas Eve / we buy up the gala apples / with thumbprint bruises, / oranges, scaly and puckered, / even bananas spotted like / Granny's hands." And when Josie meets Jordan for the first time the books says that her voice is like "new chalk". Later, Gran defends the raucous brightly colored energy of her home and says that though she sold most of her land she didn't sell the family's imagination. Be that as it may, Josie wonders of that imagination, "if we could bleach it - just a bit." And when Jordan comes out wearing his swim trunks, "his shoulders look like the nub / of new growth on a tree. / In my swimsuit I feel exposed - / a seedling in a late frost." Good stuff.

It has a first book feel to it, of course. That's not necessarily a criticism. It's just that sometimes you read a book and it offers you hints of greater things to come. "Reaching for Sun" does that. It's not a flashy book. It won't parade itself about demanding attention and respect. But the emotions in this title are raw, the characters real, and the situations interesting. A fine example of the verse novel and bound to be a book report favorite.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Treated like everyone else 27 Mar. 2007
By Carol V. Jacobson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"Reaching for Sun" by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer was the first book I read, cover to cover, in one day. Zimmer kept me turning the pages with her inspirational characters and free style poetry. She reminded me of the longing that a child has for friendship, especially if the child is different.

Josie Wyatt is a 13 year old girl with cerebral palsy who has never had a close friend. She lives with her mother and her Gran, but has never known her father. Josie's mom is overly ambitious; her Gran is a little idealistic, but she is close to both. With all the exercises and treatments Josie's mother reminds her to do daily, Josie can never forget how different she is from everyone else.

Jordan, the new boy in the neighborhood, doesn't seem to notice Josie's uniqueness. He becomes Josie's first and only best friend. Before Jordan came along, Josie, having no friends, spent her time crocheting, gardening with Gran, or watching the workers build mansions behind her farm house, but when Jordan befriends her she experiences a whole new side of her life.

She and Jordan spend time making traps for insects, experimenting on the marigolds and catching tadpoles. Jordan even teaches her Morse code before they go on a family camping trip, so they can to tap out messages to each other through the bunk bed. Jordan accepts Josie just the way she is and is not bothered by her disability.

During this summer, Josie matures into a young woman and learns the importance of family through struggles with her mother and the complications of Gran's stroke. Zimmer suggests that Josie may even discover some new feelings for Jordan when they start school in the fall.

Zimmer's words paint detailed pictures through free verse poetry. This style of poetry is attractive with its few distinct rules or boundaries and the words are allowed to flow in their own uneven pattern. This permits Zimmer to emphasize phrases, making the book memorable. Her creative prose gives the story a colorful flair and keeps it upbeat; it will appeal to reluctant readers.

Here Josie talks about the special red plate:

"If you get good grades,

or graduate,

land a new job,

or just any small thing,

Gran will fix your favorite meal and

serve you on

our one red plate."

I would love to meet Josie Wyatt. I feel like I have been allowed to be a part of her intimate world: her thoughts and her feelings about her disability. I have not been around many people with disabilities, but after reading this book, I feel like Josie bridged some invisible gap between me and people with special needs.

I've never known exactly how someone with cerebral palsy feels, and I probably never will, but from Josie I learned that we, as humans, all have the capacity for the same feelings. Josie often felt the same way about herself as I have felt toward people with special needs: uncomfortable and unattached. Josie showed me that people like her just want to forget about their disability for a moment; be treated like everyone else and not be

excluded.

"Reaching for Sun" should appeal to a wide-ranging audience because of the way Zimmer gathers her words to tell us the story of Josie and her relationships. However, I believe the book is geared towards pre-teen girls; they will be able to relate to Josie, her thoughts and her changing situations. This book will entertain everyone who reads it.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Courtesy of Teens Read Too 13 Mar. 2007
By TeensReadToo - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Josie Wyatt is trying to live as normal a life as possible, but there's one thing thats stopping her--her cerebral palsy.

Josie lives in a small farmhouse with her mother and grandma that is surrounded by huge mansions. Josie's mother is always at work and whenever she's at home she's always busy. Her grandmother loves gardening and never keeps any comments to herself. At school, everyone knows that Josie attends special ed, but when a strange new boy, Jordan, moves into the neighborhood, he never thinks of her as different, just normal

At the end of the school year, Josie and Jordan have become close friends, and all Josie wants to do is spend the whole summer with Jordan--but Jordan has another plan, which is to go to basketball camp. Josie can't imagine a summer without Jordan and she doesn't know how to cope when her grandma has a stoke.

REACHING FOR SUN by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer is a wonderful novel full of free-verse poems that tell the story of a pre-teen girl dealing with the fact that she has cerebral palsy. I definitely recommend this book for any girls who love to read, and I guarantee that you will love it just like I did. I give it 4 stars!

Reviewed by: Kylie
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions
   


Look for similar items by category