Anna was here / Jane Kurtz.

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  • Additional Information
    • Publication Information:
      1st ed.
    • Abstract:
      Summary: Three generations of the Nickel family reunite when fourth-grader Anna, her Mom and Dad, and four-year-old sister Isabella relocate to Oakwood, Kansas.
    • ISBN:
      9780060564933 : HRD
      0060564938 : HRD
    • Accession Number:
    • Accession Number:


Booklist Reviews 2013 November #1

Anna Nickles, the Gold Ribbon Safety Citizen of her fourth grade, has no interest in changing her habitat. So her family's temporary move to Oakwood, Kansas, is far beyond all the disasters she's prepared for in her notebook, which is filled with appropriate responses to threats like tornadoes and bears. In Oakwood, she has far too many relatives, many of them no more optimistic than she is, though her preacher father works hard at peacemaking. Second-cousin Simon is actively mean, and second-cousin Morgan, who supports Anna's school and Sunday school avoidance, has her own secrets. The local history of German-speaking pacifists in WWI and the mystery of past family hurts combine with present-day concerns: Can Anna keep her cat and her four-year-old sister safe? Is anyone going to pay attention to her tenth birthday? And when the heck can they go back to Colorado? Anna's sensible disaster-preparedness lists add to the appeal of a character with whom readers will sympathize for her general unhappiness—and they'll rejoice for her at the whirlwind ending, too. Copyright 2013 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2014 Spring

Preacher's-kid Anna doesn't want to move (even temporarily) from Colorado to Kansas, where her father grew up. A safety nut, Anna is worried about tornadoes and other things she can't control. Helping on a farm teaches her to have some faith in other people and in herself. Kurtz's small-town setting, populated by Anna's extended family, is finely wrought.

PW Reviews 2013 July #4

Culture shock hits hard when nine-year-old Anna Nickel has to leave her beloved Colorado home for Oakwood, Kans., where her minister father—whose family roots are there—is called to help the church community get "over a hump." "Gold Ribbon Safety Citizen" of the fourth grade, Anna prides herself on being prepared for Colorado emergencies like bears and wildfires, but her Safety Tips notebook holds no advice for the dangers of Oakwood, such as feuding relatives (including an especially hostile cousin) and rattlesnakes. Anna is lively and thoughtful, and her parents are sympathetic and credible, but her many relatives and church members are a little hard to keep straight. Liberally sprinkled with lists of tips for disasters ranging from earthquakes and floods to clouds and bees, Kurtz's (The Feverbird's Claw) book is distinguished by its comfortable treatment of God and faith, as Anna struggles to understand the unfairness and unpredictability of disasters—natural and otherwise—as well as of human beings: "What about all the people of Pompeii baking bread until fwoomp? Volcanic ash covered them." An appealing mix of humor and substance. Ages 8–12. (Sept.)

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