One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt is a must read book! It is in my list of my top favorite books for 2012 without a doubt! It was recently published in May and already has many great reviews written about it on blogs and on Twitter. Once I picked it up to read, I could not put it down because I needed to know what happened to thirteen year old, Carley Connors.
Carley Connors reminds me a little of Hollis in Pictures of Hollis Woods by Patricia Reilly Giff. Both Carley and Hollis are forced into the life of foster homes and social workers after a horrible home situation. After being hurt by her new stepfather, Carley is placed in foster care while her mother recovers in the hospital from her own injuries inflicted by her new husband.
Without giving too much of the story away, Carley is placed in the Murphy's home. This family never had a foster child, but is a loving family who takes Carley in and treats her like one of their own, helping her heal and giving her the family she never had. At one point in the story, Carley must make the decision whether to return home with her mother and take a chance or stay with the Murphys? At this point in the book, a box of kleenex needs to be nearby because by now you have grown attached to Carley and feel her pain while she makes this life decision.
One for the Murphys is a perfect book for middle grades as a read aloud, independent reading, or a book club book. Although this book deals with serious issues around family and abuse, it is written in a completely appropriate way for middle grades. I am currently reading it aloud to my 5th grade class and they are loving it! I plan on reading it aloud again next year either during our character unit or our social issues unit. One for the Murphys is such an important book for kids to experience.
This book is also exciting for me because the author, Lynda Mullaly Hunt, is a local author here in CT and has been scheduling book visits at local B&N's! Thank you Lynda for bringing this beautifully written story into all of our lives! This is such an important book for kids - thank you Lynda!
If you have not had the honor of reading One for the Murphys, move it up to the top of you TBR stack and grab a box of kleenex to have nearby! Enjoy!
Happy Reading! :)