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cover for One for the MurphysOne for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Published by Nancy Paulsen Books (Penguin Group for Young Readers)
Pages: 224
Ages: 10 and up.
Buy It: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Powell’s Books | Indiebound | Book Depository
Publishers Summary:

A moving debut novel about a foster child learning to open her heart to a family’s love.

Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But the day she becomes a foster child, and moves in with the Murphys, she’s blindsided. This loving, bustling family shows Carley the stable family life she never thought existed, and she feels like an alien in their cookie-cutter-perfect household. Despite her resistance, the Murphys eventually show her what it feels like to belong–until her mother wants her back and Carley has to decide where and how to live. She’s not really a Murphy, but the gifts they’ve given her have opened up a new future.

At their core the Murphys aren’t so bad, but to Carley Connors they’re the furthest thing from the reality she knows. With her mother in the hospital and her step-father in prison indefinitely she has no where else to go except into the system she’s heard nothing but terrible things about. But what happens when everything she expected from a foster family is flipped on it’s head? The Murphys are not only kind and caring, but they show Carley something she’s never seen before…the love of a family.

Lynda Mullaly Hunt’s debut novel One for the Murphys is phenomenal. Her main character Carley Connors is a spit-fire twelve year old with basically no filter when it comes to holding her opinion of others back. Her foster family on the other hand is nothing but caring and concerned, with the exception of the eldest son, Daniel. Each of these characters though leap off the pages and make it impossible to want to set the book down. Within a matter of pages readers will find themselves engrossed in the story of a young girl struggling to discover her place in the world and the new family she finds herself in.

In so many ways I began the book expecting something completely different, primarily because so often books centered around foster kids focus on the abusive situation they’ve either come from or end up in within the system. What lies within the pages of One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt is so much more than that, it’s a story of a young girl realizing not only her potential but the potential of those around her. Now, that’s not to say there isn’t mention of what happens to Carley, because there is and it’s terrible, but the focus of the book revolves around the new family she’s provided with for the time being. It was refreshing and absolutely wonderful to see the potential for a positive outcome in such a dreadful situation.

What’s phenomenal about One for the Murphys is how compelling a read it is. Lynda Mullaly Hunt literally leaves you chapter after chapter wanting to continue reading to find out exactly how Carley will get through all of this. It’s not an uncommon situation unfortunately, but at twelve Carley is faced with some major life decisions and fortunately she’s placed in a home that’s nurturing as opposed to what most people have become familiar with. There was one point toward the beginning of the book that I couldn’t help but wonder how it was possible that Mrs. Murphy could possibly be so incredibly cheerful. As a mom of two young kiddos, who recently seem to be attempting to “stretch their wings” so to speak, I found her cheeriness almost unbelievable. That is, until you read through the remainder of the book. There’s more to Mrs. Murphy than she lets on and for me as a mother I found that in the end I was more inspired by her compassion than put off by it. If only all foster children could have the opportunity Carley receives with the Murphys.

One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt is a debut novel that will astound readers with it’s compelling characters and it’s core theme of love and compassion. Carley Connors quickly became a young girl I wanted to rescue myself. With her past and her sassy whit Carley is one twelve year old that young readers will instantly connect to. As Carley struggles to navigate a completely foreign situation, one filled with love and compassion, she slowly realizes the potential she holds within her and the Murphys become her springboard into a new life filled with hope. One for the Murphys was a phenomenal debut novel and one that will change the way readers view foster care and it’s potential for good.

The1stdaughter Recommends: Ages 10 and up. A story of hope, love, compassion and the realization of one’s potential. Not your typical foster care novel and certainly one that will change your opinion of the entire system and the potential it contains.

Find One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt at the following spots:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Powell’s Books | Indiebound | Book Depository | Goodreads

Giveaway!

Thanks to the wonderful author of this fantastic novel, Lynda Mullaly Hunt, I’ve got a very fun swag giveaway! Two winners will win some fabulous One for the Murphys swag! Thank you Lynda!

This giveaway is open to US and Canadian residents only and you must fill out the form below to enter. Comments will not count as entries. Also, no purchase is necessary to enter. So, be sure to fill out the form below and good luck!

Thank you so much to the publisher, Nancy Paulsen Books (Penguin Group for Young Readers), for providing a copy of this book for review! Connect with them on Twitter and on Facebook!
Purchasing products by clicking through the links in this post will provide us a modest commission through our various affiliate relationships.

6 Responses to Book Review and Giveaway: One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt

  1. Gina says:

    Wow…I couldn’t imagine having to digest that situation as a youngster. Sounds like the author tackled this difficult subject well and in a positive light no less! Well done! Thanks for the share Danielle! ^_^

  2. Lynda says:

    Thanks so much, Danielle for this lovely review. I’m so glad that you enjoyed getting to know Carley and the Murphys. There are a lot of heroes in the foster care system–many “Julie Murphys” out there; I thought a lot about those people on Mother’s Day. Thanks, again, Danielle for such a thoroughly lovely review. 🙂

  3. PragmaticMom says:

    I am on the blog tour for May 31st. I loved this book too. It made me cry but in a good way. Carley is so real … I actually worry about her even now. An amazing debut novel! Loved it! Absolutely loved it!

  4. Thanks for the giveaway! This book sounds like one that will steal my heart. 🙂

    Shannon
    http://www.irunreadteach.wordpress.com

  5. kimba88 says:

    This sounds like a wonderful tale, with fleshed out characters you become invested in. I have a dear friend who is a foster Mom, who was a foster child..I hope to pick this up and share it with her.

  6. mckenna says:

    i loved the book i was this close to crying my favorite ever

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