One Year in Coal Harbor
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One Year in Coal Harbor

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  424 ratings  ·  115 reviews
Readers rejoice—Primrose Squarp is back! The wise and curious heroine of the Newbery Honor Book Everything on a Waffle is facing another adventure-filled year in Coal Harbor.

Even though her parents, once lost at sea, are home, there’s a whole slew of problems and mysteries to keep Primrose—and eager fans—busy. There’s Uncle Jack and Kate Bowzer, who may (or may not) be i...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published September 11th 2012 by Schwartz & Wade (first published August 8th 2012)
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Newbery 2013
70th out of 111 books — 994 voters
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Grade 6/7 Booktalk: Mysteries
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One Year in Coal Harbor drops us back into the oceanside town in British Columbia where you can play hockey at Uncle Jack’s house or have Miss Bowzer fix you up something to eat–just know it’s going to come on a waffle. It’s been a year since Primrose’s parents returned, and she to her home with them. She’s more rich now than ever with her Uncle Jack staying on in town, as well as Bert and Evie, her temporary foster parents who had moved to Coal Harbor all sticking by her. She visits all of them...more
Andrew Shuping
ARC provided by NetGalley

It’s true I’m probably not the age for this book, but it being a sequel to an award winning book I thought I’d give it a try. And I’m sorry but book is one of the worst I've read in a while. First of all I don’t understand why they’d release a sequel 10 years after the original book. It just seems like an awful long time to wait to regale readers with the next tale in Primrose’s life (I also didn’t think the original was that great.) Secondly every time I encountered a p...more
This didn't have the charm of the first book, and somehow, despite many serious things that happened, also seemed to lack the depth. What was cute and quirky in EVERYTHING ON A WAFFLE got schticky here. And there were a lot of loose plot threads that didn't seem quite to come together. I'm glad I made myself finish it, because it did get more interesting at the very end, and the last page is very satisfying.
Oct 23, 2012 Cathy rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Cathy by: Everything on a Waffle sequel
Shelves: juvenile-fiction
Readers rejoice--Primrose Squarp is back! The wise and curious heroine of the Newbery Honor Book Everything on a Waffle is facing another adventure-filled year in Coal Harbor. Even though her parents, once lost at sea, are home, there's a whole slew of problems and mysteries to keep Primrose--and eager fans--busy.

I gave three stars to Everything on a Waffle. Sadly this book did not even measure out to that. I understand that Coal Harbor is likely a small town by the eccentricities of the small...more
Jasmine Ko
I adored Everything on a Waffle (it was my very first MMGM post!) and was ecstatic to find out there is now a sequel for my beloved book. I didn't think it needed a sequel, just like how I felt with Princess Academy: Palace of Stone, but I was pleasantly surprised with that sequel, so I thought this would be another great addition to Primrose's story. However, I'm sorry to say that I was very disappointed.

SPOILER ALERT for those who haven't read Everything on a Waffle!!! It was nice to revisit a...more
Is it wrong that the entire time I read this book (and Waffle) I wanted so much to go out to coffee with Polly Horvath? She writes the kinds of books that I would have gobbled up as a tween and now love as an adult. They are not sugary sweet or predictable. They are actually kind of dark. I love them.
That said, this one bogged down a pinch for me in the middle. Perhaps I am a bad person and did not care enough about the logging to want to read so much about it. Or perhaps this one was a little...more
I am always buying copies of "Everything on a Waffle" when I see it, and giving it to people, but I couldn't clearly remember why I loved it so much. Then I read the first page of "One Year in Coal Harbor" and it all came flooding back.


Loved it.

I read the entire thing in one sitting while waiting for my car to be fixed, and the dealership employees got to watch me laugh, grin, shake my head, and, finally, cry.

THIS is Polly Horvath! (I was so disappointed in the bunnies last year.) The...more
Barb Middleton
Dang, I was confused reading this book. Granted it wasn't all the author's fault. I've turned into a loopy menopausal reader which means momentary brain shutdowns. At least that's my excuse. I also DESPERATELY NEED SPRING BREAK! First, I thought Quincehead was a parrot. He ain't. He's a gawl dong blasted dog. If you read too fast the word, Cockapoo, is quite similar to cockatoo. Then I read Bert and Evie as Bert and Ernie. Their spitfire dialogue made me think they were hyperactive ten-year-old...more
Jen B.
Not gonna lie - I didn't even know this WAS a sequel, until I was done reading it. I liked it enough that I kind of want to go back and read the first one. However, I don't know that I feel it absolutely necessary - but maybe if I did, something inside me would like One Year better?

I struggled with the purpose of this book until the very end, which I found frustrating on a regular basis. I shared my journey through this book with my students, being honest that I didn't want to give up on it, bu...more
Sarah Sammis
One Year in Coal Harbor by Polly Horvath is the sequel to Everything on a Waffle. Although Primrose returns to narrate, she isn't the main character. That honor goes to Evie and Bert's newest foster child, a troubled boy named Ked.

Ked spends one year with his foster parents. In that time Primrose does her best to help him fit in. She can still remember the time when she was ridiculed for being a foster child.

Primrose's uncle and the owner of the Girl on the Red Swing continue to compete. Now it'...more
Jim Erekson
This sequel to Everything on a Waffle brings Primrose back, and the plot revolves around her machinations to get her uncle Jack together with the owner of the Girl on the Red Swing restaurant (the one that serves everything on a waffle). The fact that everything does come together in almost Dickensian fashion by the end doesn't rob from the fact that none of it happens the way Primrose wants it to. Nothing is really in her control, and she goes through a lot to figure this out. But while she was...more
Thank you very much for allowing me to read One Year in Coal Harbor. This review will be published at and on

Polly Horvath is a beautiful writer. Her books are the kind that you fall right into and get lost in the world she has created. I've loved everything I've read from her and I really enjoyed One Year in Coal Harbor. This is a sequel to Everything on a Waffle and tells the further adventures of Primrose, her family, Burt and Evie, Uncle Jack and a new...more
Cordelia Dinsmore
This is the first Polly Horvath book I've read, but I regret that I can't praise it as much as I'd like. The story itself was interesting enough, and I liked the MC and her former foster parents, but the other characters left me feeling a bit cheated. I felt they were rushed in their development and I never did get a good feel for them, except possibly her uncle. I liked him quite a bit.

The main problem I had with this was the voice. I know a lot of twelve-year-olds, but can't name one that has...more
This would be an interesting book club, or even older elementary kid book club pick. There are things about it that are really stellar, including the fact that the author stays true to being entirely in the point of view of her narrator. We never get an interruption that clarifies things from an adult perspective, and I appreciated that. Characterization is also good. However, the rambling interior monologues and a few over simplifications didn't keep the plot moving forward for me. I wanted to...more
I read Everything on a Waffle a few years ago and so I picked up this one to read to find out more about the story. Unfortunately, I barely could recall anything about the first book at all. Reading this book, none of the characters were familiar to me, and basically the only thing that rang a bell was the fact that everything in the restaurant was served on top of a waffle. That said, by itself it was a good solid story and kept me fairly interested. I wasn't jumping up and down, but it was ent...more
The book had moments, but unfortunately they were too few and too far between. An excellent example is on page 90 when the author describes the "thin places," a fantastic metaphor, but then goes on to explain how the main characters think bike helmets are useless on the next page, which totally deflates any good impressions built up in the previous insight. On top of the many such examples, the recipes are horrible, unless you want to die a slow and tortured death.
Oh, Polly Horvath. I'm having the usual audience struggle with this one. The first chapter is an excruciating one of putting a dog to sleep. Later, a dog is hit by a car and killed. And might a boy possibly die as well? This, juxtaposed with the lighthearted wackiness of the residents of Coal Harbor just has never seemed as successful as it did on Everything on a Waffle.
Lonna Pierce
Am I the only one who finds nosy Primrose annoying? I listened to the audio version, and kept shaking my head at her verbose commentaries on other peoples' lives. Unbelievable. *Spoiler alert: Plus, this novel features not one but two dead dogs.Really?! Not my cup of tea.
Really enjoyed this quiet book about a girl who makes observations about her logging town, plays matchmaker for two adults she adores, meets an unlikely friend, and discovers her own subtle talents. Horvath is a master of "voice".

It was great to read about Prinrose et al again, but I marked this down a star because the recipes weren't as good as on the first one. I blame the sudden addition of mini marshmallows.
I found myself laughing aloud a lot during this book! I love primrose's perception of the world. I also cried. Polly is a favorite author.
This story is the sequel to Everything on a Waffle, which I have not read. Primrose, the main character is a likable young girl who seems to be looking for a best friend, although she seems to have many friends who are adults. She spends a lot of time with Evie and Bert, who were her foster parents when her parents were lost at sea for a year. I take it this happened in Waffle. Primrose also spends a lot of time and effort trying to get Miss Bowzer and her Uncle Jack together. Also part of the p...more
Jan 06, 2013 Phoebe rated it 5 of 5 stars Recommends it for: Deborah, Heidi
This astounding book is narrated by the even more astounding Primrose Squarp, whose experiences as a foster child during the year her parents were lost at sea were detailed in the earlier Everything on a Waffle. Primrose is determined to marry her Uncle Jack off to the prickly owner of the Girl on a Red Swing restaurant, Ms. Bowzer; she befriends Ked, the new, very quiet foster son of Bert and Evie; and she wants to publish a book of recipes to support the Fishermen's Aid fund. But nothing seems...more
Last year after I finally got around to reading Everything With a Waffle I decided to add Polly Horvath to my “favorite authors” list. Her writing has strong characters deeply connected to place and I like that. I loved Primrose Squarp – spunky, independent, creative and resilient. (Love the guinea pig scene – both at The Girl on the Red Swing and in the school guidance counselor’s office. It’s still making me snicker.) I was glad that things worked out happily for her, but I was sad to leave he...more
Ms. Yingling
Primrose Squarp is back, and so are her parents, after being missing for a while during Everything on a Waffle (2001). She is settling back in with her parents, trying to arrange her Uncle Jack's romance for him, and hanging out with her former foster parents, Bert and Evie, whose dog Quincehead just passed away. Feeling lonely, they agree to take in another foster child, Ked, with whom Primrose gets along famously. When nearby Mendolay Mountain is in danger of being strip mined, the community r...more
Emmet O'Neal Library- Children's Department
Has anyone else missed hanging out with Primrose Squarp since you closed the covers of Everything on a Waffle?

Don’t worry – she’s back with a new set of adventures and insights in this sequel. When we left Primrose, she had gotten her parents back, her temporary foster parents Bert and Evie had moved to Coal Harbor, and she was looking forward to her Uncle Jack getting together with Miss Bowzer, proprietess of The Girl on the Red Swing (where everything is served on a waffle…remember?).

But now,...more
Check this review out and others on my blog: Get Real.

A real pleasure to read, One Year in Coal Harbor is the sequel to Newbery Honor book Everything on a Waffle. Primrose Squarp is doing well now that her parents have returned from being lost at sea. She still visits her foster parents Bert and Evie and even makes a new friend they take in Ked. Primrose is filled with plans for Ked, whom wants to stay in Coal Harbor permanently, and her Uncle Jack and Miss Bowser - Primrose would like them to g...more
lots of great moments in this book . . . Polly Horvath moments. I love her characters insights and ways of looking at the world. I love how she makes the reader aware of things that not even her main character, Primrose, is aware of. Primrose is a lovely young girl, but also tied to her own perspective. We discover things as the reader that she does later, and other discoveries are made together.

So much humor here as well! and the recipes . . . while I have no desire to make Freeziola, I might...more
I thought this book was HILARIOUS in some places. I haven't read Everything on a Waffle but I have read some of her other books and she just does quirky and funny turns of phrase so well.

So ... rating for me? Four stars. I started taking some screen shots in Skitch (since you can't bookmark or make notes electronic advanced reading copies, which is how I was reading it) of the funniest lines. I was going to quote a couple of them here.

But there were so many! And having to retype everything...more
Has anyone else missed hanging out with Primrose Squarp since you closed the covers of Everything on a Waffle?

Don’t worry – she’s back with a new set of adventures and insights in this sequel. When we left Primrose, she had gotten her parents back, her temporary foster parents Bert and Evie had moved to Coal Harbor, and she was looking forward to her Uncle Jack getting together with Miss Bowzer, proprietess of The Girl on the Red Swing (where everything is served on a waffle…remember?).

But now,...more
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Polly Horvath is the author of many books for young people, including Everything on a Waffle, The Pepins and Their Problems, The Canning Season and The Trolls. Her numerous awards include the Newbery Honor, the National Book Award for Young People's Literature, the Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor, the Vicky Metcalf Award for Children's Literature, the Mr. Christie Award, the international White Raven...more
More about Polly Horvath...
Everything on a Waffle My One Hundred Adventures Mr. and Mrs. Bunny—Detectives Extraordinaire! The Canning Season The Trolls

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