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The Healing Spell by Kimberley Griffiths Little

Published by Scholastic Press

Pages: 368

Ages: 9-12

Publishers Summary: Twelve ­year­ old Livie is living with a secret and it’s crushing her. She knows she is responsible for her mother’s coma, but she can’t tell anyone. It’s up to her to find a way to wake her momma up. Stuck in the middle of three sisters, hiding a forbidden pet alligator, and afraid to disappoint her daddy, whom she loves more than anyone else, Livie struggles to find her place within her own family as she learns about the powers of faith and redemption. Livie’s powerful, emotional, and sometimes humorous story will stay with readers long after the last line is read. Set in the lush bayou of Louisiana, Kimberley Griffiths Little brings Livie’s story to life with power and grace.

Each of us carries secrets, sometimes those secrets become burdens so large it feels as if the world may come crashing down on top of us. For Livie her biggest secret revolves around her mother, not only that but the circumstances surrounding her mother’s coma. With a house full of people to constantly pester her and watch her every move Livie’s only escape is the bayou and a wonderful little pet alligator. In her desperation she seeks outside help in the restoration of her mother, but at what cost and will it work? Is there more to “the healing spell” than just healing her mother? Livie’s story is one of healing, but possibly not only for her mother.

The Healing Spell is a beautiful journey into the gorgeous bayou lands in Louisiana and into the heart of a young girl named Livie. Often with the first glance into the bayou many would be disturbed by it’s inhabitants and threatening nature, but when you look deeper and take the time to appreciate the lush beauty nestled within you discover something infinitely enchanting. So it is with Livie as well. A young girl, only twelve and just coming into her own. She’s torn from every side by the hidden secret of her mother’s “sleeping sickness” and feeling of responsibility that comes with it. Because of this Livie is hard and closed off from those who care most about her. This isn’t only evident in the story, but for the reader as well. In the beginning, I actually had a difficult time connecting with Livie because of her distance. Fortunately that didn’t last and as the story continued you grew to love her and the struggle she was going through.

More than Livie this was a story about healing and growth. Most importantly about hope and faith. Not only Livie suffers from secrets and how each of the characters handles their own “healing” is what makes the story so profound. For a middle grade fiction it was extremely deep, though I don’t think that would deter younger readers from enjoying the story at all. Although, it may be best enjoyed when read with a parent who can discuss some of the more heavy topics. Each of the characters, from her father to her older and younger sisters as well as her Aunt and cousin have “sins” they need to recover from. It was the interaction between each and how they learned to love, care and forgive the others that truly made this a special book.

Forgiveness and faith aren’t only for one type of person, each of us constantly struggle to be better and be kind to others. In The Healing Spell each of the characters, especially Livie seeks their own solution to their secrets and/or “sins”. Kimberley Griffiths Little has written a beautiful novel not only in the setting, but the story as well. Set in the flourishing bayou of Louisiana you discover that things aren’t always as they seem on the surface and if you take the time, are patient and have a bit of faith you may just discover something more beautiful than you ever imagined.

The1stdaughter Recommends: Ages 10 and up. A beautiful story about the power of faith that will be enjoyed especially when read and discussed between parent and child.

Please stop by The Teen {Book} Scene for more details and other tour stop locations! Make sure to stop by tomorrow for an interview with author Kimberley Griffiths Little as well as an opportunity to win your own copy of The Healing Spell!

Thank you so much to the author, Kimberley Griffiths Little, and publisher, Scholastic Press, for providing a copy of his book for review and giveaway!
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5 Responses to Book Review: The Healing Spell by Kimberley Griffiths Little

  1. Wow. This sounds like a lovely voyage. What a beautiful review 🙂 Thank you!

  2. […] interviewing a favorite author of his mom’s, Kimberley Griffiths Little. Her recent book, The Healing Spell, cast it’s own spell on his sweet mom and she’s been forever changed by it. To read […]

  3. Gina says:

    Great review, Danielle! I love the way you described the bayou….such creativity, it sets the imagination free. A wonderful message is imparted within this enchanting tale from the sound of it….I certainly know a reader or two this would make a great suggestion for. Will be passing along soon…thanks for sharing!

  4. Great interview Turkeybird. Your questions were awesome.

  5. This sounds wonderful. Thanks for the review 🙂

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