3 out of 4 stars
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Perky Girl: The Amazing Life of Bienna Molo by Vera I. Roberts is a book written by a child for other children and follows the experiences of Bienna Molo, the main character. The book takes the reader through Bienna’s journey from kindergarten to high school to her marriage and lastly, her death. It contains many short chapters which describe significant events in her life, the problems she faces and how they are eventually resolved. Some of these events include her fight with her best friend, how she saves her school from a robbery, the first and last days of every grade, her experiences at a salon while getting her hair curled and her estranged sister’s return.
Unlike most books, this book contained no main plot. To me, it seemed like a collection of brief descriptions of numerous, distinct events. The only common factor throughout the book was the main character, Bienna Molo. There were numerous, constantly changing secondary characters. While I was disappointed with the lack of a basic storyline and would have definitely liked more depth in the book, I think many people and especially children might consider this unique structure as a refreshing change. Further, while there were numerous secondary characters and I could not keep track of them, this did not confuse me or interrupt my flow of reading.
I usually associate Children’s books with images and important life lessons. This book contained no images (apart from the cover itself and a few images of handwritten notes) and did not directly emphasize upon any life lesson or skill. There were instances where the main character, Bienna Molo resolved fights and took a stand. For most parts of the book, Bienna was a strong and inspirational character. However, the impact of these positive character traits in the overall context of the book was limited. I would have liked the book much more if it contained a powerful, important and positive message.
In terms of language, the book used simple vocabulary and sentence structures. It was very easy to read and follow. I did not come across any major grammatical, editing or formatting errors. Further, I liked how the book was divided into numerous small chapters, which made it easier to read. There were a few handwritten notes which were enjoyable to read and held my attention.
I would rate the book 3 out of 4 stars. The book was easy to read and contained descriptions of some amusing events. I was disappointed by the absence of a main plot and images, and hence I cannot give it a perfect rating. Since the book follows Bienna’s entire life, I would recommend this book for children who are curious about the future and what happens as you grow up.
Perky Girl: The Amazing Life of Bienna Molo
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