Series: Bree, Book 2
Author: Yolanda Ridge
Publisher: Orca Book Publishers
Book source: review copy from author
From the jacket:
Bree's grandmother's farm is about to be destroyed by a superhighway unless Bree can stop it. Convinced that saving the land will make her grandma happy again, Bree tries to rally cousins and neighbors. In the process, she uncovers some shocking things about her own relatives. If she isn't able to save the farm, can she at least manage to save her family? And will progress come at too high a price?
In Yolanda Ridge's first book, Bree, an enthusiastic tree climber, has to fight to overturn her condo development's bylaw against it. I really enjoyed Trouble in the Trees and was looking forward to Road Block.
Bree's grown a little bit in this installment - she's more thoughtful, more confident, and more strategic. These qualities come in handy, because she's still got her keenly-developed sense of injustice, and the will to do something about it. And this time, the injustice isn't entirely imposed by outside forces. This time, not all of Bree's family members see things the way she does, adding an extra layer of complication to the story. It doesn't stop her, however, from doing what she believes is right.
I have only one teeny complaint about Road Block. Bree's up against a bigger challenge than she was in Trouble in the Trees, and I wanted to watch her struggle with it a little longer before coming to a resolution. I doubt this will be a problem for middle-graders, however, who will appreciate the story's rapid forward movement. They'll also love the idea that a regular kid has the power to make such a big difference in her world.
I think this series has great potential for reluctant readers. I'd also recommend it to fans of Carl Hiaasen.
For more information on Yolanda Ridge and her books, visit her website. You can also check out her interview here at Ten Stories Up.