by Vicki Grant
Orca Book Publishers, 2015
$10.95, 256 pp, ages 10+
Small Bones takes place in Hope, Ontario during 1964. Dot is a 16 year old orphan, who has lived in an orphanage her entire life. Everything in Dot’s world seemed perfect, until one fateful June night, she awoke to the sound of screaming and the smell of smoke. The only home Dot has ever known is now gone and she and the other six eldest girls who lived in the home now have to undertake a journey to discover who they really are. Mrs. Hazelton, the matron, has a few clues to Dot’s past, which lead her to a small town called Buckminster. She quickly finds a job as a seamstress at the local resort, where she meets new friends and discovers that the town she now calls home has a deep, dark secret.
My favourite character in this book is Dot because she is very imaginative and is prone to daydreaming. She is also kind, hardworking and very determined. Something I loved about Small Bones is how well written it was. I found it very easy to visualize what the characters were doing while reading. I also found the story plot very captivating and I was unable to put this book down for a second. Another great thing about this book is there are six other books, all of which are part of a series called “Secrets.” Each book focuses on one of the seven eldest girls in the home and their lives after the fire.
Review by Anya, age 13, grade 8.
This review is from Canadian Teacher Magazine’s Apr/May 2016 issue.