Written by Mary Knight
Curley is a young man who’s been learning to use his words. In fact, Papaw, his grandfather and legal guardian, gives him a word each week to contemplate and get comfortable with. They live in Kentucky coal country, and Curley lost his entire family because of coal mining. Investigating the mountain wildlife for a school science project, Curley and his two friends are drawn deeper into the life of the mountain itself, trying to save the mountain for an increasing number of reasons. They discover elk that were never meant to live in Kentucky, the type of destruction their mountain is due to experience, and a connection to the Native Americans from the area. With the story set in the present day, the young people also learn of the power one person can have with the help of social media. Life goes on, though it may not go the direction you hope or expect.
The characters ring true to life and the story is fun and exciting.
This story will fit in nicely to a unit on environmental impact or just as an exercise in the power of vocabulary. Many reading activities are suggested by the report the characters assemble and by the other actions they take, including creating videos and posting them on the internet.
- Title: Saving Wonder
- Author: Mary Knight
- Published: Scholastic Press, February 23, 2016
- Reviewer: Sue Poduska
- Format: Hardcover, 288 pages
- Grade Level: 3 to 7
- Genre: Fiction, science, environment
- ISBN: 978-0545828932