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Sway

3.86 of 5 stars 3.86  ·  rating details  ·  542 ratings  ·  152 reviews
For four long months, ten-year-old Cass has been dreaming of the day her mom, Toodi, will come home. But when Toodi's welcome back party takes a turn for the disastrous, Cass finds herself stuck alone with her dull-as-dirt dad, who insists that they set off for the summer on a mysterious adventure--just the two of them.
It turns out Cass's dad has some big-time surprises u...more
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 15th 2012 by Disney-Hyperion
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(showing 1-30 of 1,861)
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Krystal
Turner wrote an interesting, child friendly novel that looks into the thoughts of a ten year old girl in an out-of-the ordinary situation. Cass’s mother is a volunteer rescuer and her father is a janitor. Douglas, Toodi, and Cass Nordenhaur live next to her Uncle Clay, Aunt Jo, and Cousin Syd. Douglas and his brother Clay planned a party to honor Toodi’s return home after being gone four months. Rather than celebrating, however, Cass’s mother comes home with life-changing news. Toodi is leaving...more
Carol Royce Owen
Cass is a 10 year old girl who worships her rescue-worker mother. Sway opens on the day her mother is returning home from a 4 month rescue mission in Missouri (Misery, as her 12 year old cousin, Syd calls it), a day that promises great celebration and delight, but turns disastrous. In his attempt to pick up the pieces, her boring, but steadfast dad loads them into an RV given the name "the ROAST," for a whirlwind cross country tour of magic and discovery, stopping only when a shoe is found on th...more
Tiffany Neal
I fell completely head over heels for Sway, Amber McRee Turner's writing, Casstanea, the Nordenhauers, MB McClean, and the heartbreaking, wondrous, and magical tale. Within the first page, I knew that this book was going to be different than other MG books out there - between the characters, the setting, the story line, the inventive words, and the way that the writing was so unique, yet smooth. I connected with the main character right away and felt that the honesty that this story kept with ho...more
Tim
I’m always hesitant to begin a piece that seems to have some fantastical element to it, but I’m thrilled that I picked up this book. Amber McRee Turner’s writing was consistent and enjoyable throughout the entire book and she created characters we can root for as Cass and her father work on their relationship. I was very impressed Turner’s debut novel and look forward to getting into the hands of my students in room 107!
Paul  Hankins
We'll have more to say about SWAY as the May 2012 release date approaches.

In the mean time, if you have trusted my recommendations in the past, go ahead and put SWAY in your TBR piles.

Get ready for the best cross-country trip your heart will ever take by way of RV.
Eyehavenofilter
I flew through this... I was really conflicted on how to rate this since its not my usual fare but it was free from Starbucks iBooks, and the cover is so sweet. This is written with the hyper-drama of a typical pre-teen( that's a complement BTW). It was different in that it didn't center around the typical plot that most books seem to cling to these days.
Not a rich family, not even middle class Cass, her mom and dad barely get by. Dad is the local fix-it guy who sells meat door to door. Mom thin...more
Destinee Sutton
Things I liked about this book:

1. CAN IT! When Cass's cousin's family argues, they literally write down their complaints and put them in cans.
2. Shut up dot com. Do vegetarians have to speak Fig Latin instead of Pig Latin? And all the other wacky stuff Cass's cousin Syd says.
3. The idea that Sway is both magical and realistic.
4. The rhymey punniness of the language.
5. Cass's dad, who just wants his daughter to like him.

Things I did not so much like about this book:

1. The rhymey punniness w...more
Terryann
4-6 grade
when cass finds out her mom is leaving, cass's dad takes her on an adventure in an attempt to bring cass's hero worship from her rescue/adventurer mom to her plain old boring blah dad. mr. nordenhaur's attempt to bring some magic into cass's life is at first met with disdain, then met with enthusiasm and eventually comes crashing down on both their heads. a tender story of redemption with a really likeable main character. i especially loved her 'noodles' and wished i could see a real r...more
Brenda
What a magical book! A great read for kids who are always trying to figure out their parents.

The honesty throughout the book is refreshing.

Elizabeth Norris
This book had me within the first chapter. The writing is beautiful, the characters are so real, and I could not put it down.
Gtowntide
Absolutely musical.
Snorkle
This story had that Newbery-esque feel. Not that I’m saying this book was Newbery material, it wasn’t quite that good, but I did really enjoy it. I liked seeing the journey Cass made from believing something and trying so hard to fix it, but ultimately realizing she needed to change her view to gain a better perspective. The story was bittersweet. I liked how hard the father worked to keep his daughter and how much Cass and her father grew together as they took this trip.

I was so glad to see ho...more
Melanie
Beautiful story!! Absolutely fantastic debut novel by Amber McRee Turner!

The story begins with 10 year old Cass, named after the Castanea dentata tree, waiting for her Mother to return from a 4 month rescue mission in flood ridden Missouri. Why Mother Toodi is off saving widows and orphans in nature torn areas, Cass is home with Dad Douglass, who is a janitor in the school year, meat sales man in the summer. Cass keeps a journal called the Book of In-Betweens where she doodles and takes notes fo...more
Barbara
When ten-year-old Cass Nordenhauer's mother Toodi comes home to Olyn, Alabama from her work as a disaster relief worker, Cass looks forward to all the fun they'll have. Cass looks up to Toodi and tries not to mind all the traveling she must do for her job. But when her father proposes a plan for a road trip in an old RV called The Roast, Toodi takes off again, leaving Cass to deal with her boring, rather ordinary father. In Cass's eyes, he is decidedly unheroic, and although she agrees to go on...more
Kimberly
I got this book from Starbucks as a free pick of the week, and boy am I glad I gave it a try.

I love this book, and in my opinion it's a classic. I love Cass, her story and her voice. "Sway" is a story, lovingly told, with characters that are believable, and with whom you really come to care about. What an absolute pleasure to read.

I will place this book with my other beloved "Father/Daughter" books "To Kill A Mockingbird", "The Lovely Bones", and "Addie Pray" also known by the title "Paper Moo...more
Gwyn Ryan
Cass idolizes her mom, who does disaster recovery and travels a lot. Cass's life is marked by long stretches of time alone with her boring father in between mom's visits home. But when Mom comes home this time Cass immediately senses something's not right. Seems Mom's decided to get herself another family. Cass blames her father - maybe if he wasn't so boring, Mom would have stuck around. The last thing she wants to do is take a road trip in the beat-up RV her father's been restoring. But Dad's...more
Tish
314 pages of deliciously unique language, quirky but believable characters, realism that is oh-so-magical, tears, laughter, a life-changing message and the perfect heart-swelling ending. Oh, and lots and lots of old soap. It's like nothing I've ever read. I can't decide which of Cass and Dad's adventures I love the most...the Belfuss Family Crawfish Boil/funeral? Nimble Creek and the first "Soapernatural Wonders"? Biiiiiiiiiiiiiiig Riiiiiiiiiiiiights? It's the shoes what choose? The sad trip to...more
Amanda
I really enjoyed this book. I could almost give it 5 stars, but I save that for books that were incredible. This book was great and fun, but just shy of 5 stars. After a huge disappointment, Cass's dad takes her on a road trip to help them move on. On the trip he introduces her to the "soapernatural" wonder of Sway. The book is real with just enough implied fantasy to add interest. It is not a fantasy story; it's a book about the complicated relationships so typical nowadays. I really liked the...more
Kris Potratz
I'd like to meet the marketing genius who decided to put out a new free iBook next to the tip jar at the Starbucks every Tuesday. A book with my coffee? Why thank you, I would love one! Well played marketing genius...

The second part of the genius of this ploy, is that I would have never have picked up this sweet little novel if it weren't on the iTunes card. This book sat in my iBooks queue for a long time but I am really happy that I finally had a chance to get through it.

Full Thoughts:
Paper Po...more
Clare Cannon
A cute contemporary story about a girl trying to deal with her parents' separation (or rather, her mother's abandonment of herself and her father for another man). It's cute mainly because of the girl's perky way of speaking, and because of her father's creative efforts to become the inspiring parent his daughter needs at this time. An endearing though involved story that give serious themes a lighter feel, it would be helpful for kids suffering through a similar predicament.
Susank
I just fell completely in love with this book! So many special things..."wrength" is now part of my vocabulary, I will always get the first slice of pizza from now on (because it IS the mom slice) , the Memphis bridge will forever be the "Mercy" bridge, and I will never be able to sing "It Is Well With My Soul" without blubbering like a baby. I can't wait to see the movie :)
Lisa
As I said in my book club discussion, this was a book I didn't love while reading but enjoyed more during the discussion. My 10-year-old daughter liked it a lot, despite me thinking that some of the themes were too mature for her (what do I know?). She seemed to understand much of what was going on, despite the author's frequent language play and long descriptions.
Lisa
Reading this book, I sometimes got the feeling that it was trying too hard to be quirky. But I enjoyed its eccentricities all the same, especially Douglas' nicknames for Cass. It's not a superficial story, as Cass deals with her mother's departure and the reasons behind it, but it's well done. I can totally see this as a movie!
Kristen Badger
Turner, A. (201s). Sway. New York: Disney Hyperion.

This sweet and powerful story is about a girl who has always thought the world of her mom but has never thought her dad was anything special. Throughout the story she realizes that her dad is full of surprises and her mom isn't the person she thought she was.

This story is great to teach students about the power of positive thinking. The many historical figures mentioned throughout the book would make great research projects for students. The te...more
Donalyn
Too many character affectations. Too clever. So over-the-top it was impossible to fall into the story. I felt that the soaps were a blatant history lesson.

There were beautiful moments, too. Ms. Turner knows how to write likable, fun characters. I look forward to reading what she writes next.
Sandy Brehl
Universal concerns (abandonment, anger, honesty) are portrayed in a plot structured around a unique premise. The characters and story are equally credible and engaging. A great choice for any reader, but especially one who is struggling with trust issues.
Laura
I Loved this book. It brought in a great and refreshing new perspective on parents. It also showed that single parents, even dads, can be there for their kids. A great read!
Greg Armamentos
As a teacher, I have the privilege of reading many middle grade books, and trying to find books that my students will love. One of the best indicators of my student's ability to connect with a book, is my own. I have found a direct correlation between my passion for a book, and my students' willingness to take that book for a spin. Basically, I "sell" books, stories, tales, and characters to my students. And they do the same for me.

With the responsibility comes the need to be authentic. I can't...more
Bryan T.
This book has such a Big Fish feel to it. Full of magic in a real-world wonderful kind of way. Full of heartache, hope, and humor.
Haylee
This book is amazing. I would recommend it to anyone. It is so thought provoking and has an amazing moral compass. May
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