Felicity Pickle's mother has a wandering heart. Felicity has never lived in the same place more than a few months and longs for a place to call home. When the Pickles arrive at an aunt's house in Midnight Gulch, Felicity finds a best friend and a real home. Legend says that Midnight Gulch used to be filled with magic, and Felicity soon discovers that a snicker of that magic still exists. Will it be enough to cure Felicity's mother's yearning to leave?
Lloyd's story is fresh and interesting and her characters are endearing. Felicity's character sees words floating out of and around people and things. It is an interesting idea and device that helps move the plot along. I listened to the book (as I usually do) and imagined the words creatively typeset on the page. I was a little disappointing when I saw the print version, and the words didn't float across the page as I had imagined. I think the publishers missed an opportunity there. The only thing about the story that made me pause, is that the character of Jonah is too nice. No 11-year-old boy would really be that nurturing and open with his emotions. The character of Jonah is disabled, and I wonder if disabled people get tired of disabled people in books always being super nice, or super brave, or super capable. Still, if you want a upbeat, well written, feel good book to read to your family, here is a great choice. (311 p)