Lovely, fresh, ambitious, subversive, sharp and generous, My
One Hundred Adventures
is a splendid novel for wise children; world-weary
teens; and adults, young and old. Reading Horvath is good for the mind, the body
and the heart.
Intrepid Polly Horvath again elevates children's book-writing to high art as she
has with The Trolls
The Canning Season
. The very first paragraph takes off so swiftly and is
so good, I reread it twice, then felt the need to share it with someone:
"All summers take me back to the sea. There in the long eelgrass, like birds'
eggs waiting to be hatched, my brothers and sister and I sit, grasses higher
than our heads, arms and legs like thicker versions of the grass waving in the
wind, looking up at the blue washed sky. My mother is gathering food for dinner:
clams and mussels...
Beyond the Book
Preserving the Sweetness of Summer
Jane Fielding's home and family are the center of My One Hundred
. Her mother's inventive, fresh cooking, the gathering of fresh
sea food, berries and greens, and the calm fellowship the Fieldings enjoy at
mealtimes sustain and fortify Jane as she greets each new adventure. Jane's
mother preserves the sweetness of summer with her perfect strawberry jam (much
like the elderly sisters who preserve Maine blueberries in Horvath's
award-winning The Canning Season)
. Old-fashioned horehound candy also
figures prominently in the novel.
No Cook Strawberry Freezer Jam
1¾ quarts fully ripe strawberries
1¾ cups sugar