Barbara's Reviews > One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street

One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street by Joanne Rocklin
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's review
Dec 22, 11

bookshelves: ncbla, word-lovers
Read in December, 2011

I'm often saddened to learn of apple or cherry orchards cut down in the name of progress, and I sometimes wonder what exactly prompts the resolution on the part of the owner to cut or sell the orchards that have produced such delicious fruits. In this particular story, a group of neighborhood children begin their day under the only remaining Valencia orange tree left from a large orchard in California. As most children know, the tree has provided them with a gathering place, shade, something to climb, but what they don't know is that the tree has great significance for some of the adults in the neighborhood. Consequently, this book contains several stories about the big and small issues in the lives of the children, but it also travels back in time so that readers can glimpse the effects of the Great Depression in the 1930s and to 1967 during the Vietnam War era. Especially poignant were the phone calls made to 911 by elderly neighbor Ethel Finneymaker--known as Ms. Snoops by the neighborhood children--as she did her best to defend her territory. I loved the fact that she introduced the wonders of the OED to Ali and used challenging vocabulary words even around the children.

Much of the story and descriptive language are immensely satisfying, and my only quibbles with this one are that there are simply too many things going on and too many coincidences. Still, the author has forced me to think of oranges quite differently than I did before.

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