Middle Grade Monday: Maud and Addie, by Maureen Buchanan Jones
Title: Maud and Addie
Author: Maureen Buchanan Jones
Publication Info: May 2021 Fitzroy Books. Paperback is 240 pages.
Source: Library digital resources
In 1910, the two sisters, eleven- and twelve-year-old Maud and Addie, are eagerly anticipating their Summer Social in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia. However, the event does not quite go according to plan, and the two girls are swept out to sea as they are rowing home at the day’s end. They find themselves adrift in the unforgiving North Atlantic with only the contents of a picnic hamper to sustain them and a carriage blanket to keep them warm. Finding their way through stormy seas, the girls finally make landfall on a deserted island. With string and a jackknife recovered from Maud’s pockets and a parasol and novel contributed by Addie, the girls create a world for themselves among the island dunes, keeping company with sea birds and other sea creatures. Their ensuing adventures test their wits and, in the process, forge a bond that enables them to survive.
This was kind of a fun read. It didn't quite read or feel genuine to the period (I couldn't ever put on a finger on why not, but it just felt more modern), but I don't think that will stop any kids from enjoying this tale of two very different sisters. The interactions between the two girls felt spot-on to me--they managed to work together where they had to, but that didn't stop all the normal bickering.
As for the plot, it holds together. Things maybe go just a little too well for the girls on their desert island, as though maybe the author hasn't done all that much camping, but it does work, for the most part. The conclusion held its own twists and turns, some more believable than others.
Overall, I'd say this is a story that most middle-grade readers will enjoy, while adult readers may had a little more trouble with the willing suspension of disbelief. Best for ages 8 and up.
FTC Disclosure: I borrowed an electronic copy of Maud and Addie from my library, and received nothing from the author or the publisher in exchange for my honest review. The opinions expressed are my own and those of no one else. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
©Rebecca M. Douglass, 2021
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