Summary and book reviews of My One Hundred Adventures by Polly Horvath

My One Hundred Adventures

By Polly Horvath

My One Hundred Adventures
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  • Hardcover: Sep 2008,
    272 pages.
    Paperback: Jan 2010,
    272 pages.

    Publication Information

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Book Reviewed by:
Jo Perry

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About this Book

Book Summary

Jane is 12 years old, and she is ready for adventures, to move beyond the world of her siblings and single mother and their house by the sea, and step into the “know-not what.” And, over the summer, adventures do seem to find Jane, whether it’s a thrilling ride in a hot-air balloon, the appearances of a slew of possible fathers, or a weird new friendship with a preacher and psychic wannabe. Most important, there’s Jane’s discovery of what lies at the heart of all great adventures: that it’s not what happens to you that matters, but what you learn about yourself.

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Summer Begins

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 and the sharply salty greens that grow by the shore. It is warm enough to lie here in the little silty puddles like bathwater left in the tub after the plug has been pulled. It is the beginning of July and we have two months to live out the long, nurturing days, watching the geese and the saltwater swans and the tides as they are today, slipping out, out, out as the moon pulls the other three seasons far away wherever it takes things. Out past the planets, far away from Uranus and the edge of our solar system, into the brilliantly lit dark where the things we don't know about yet reside. Out...

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Reviews

BookBrowse

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.   (Reviewed by Jo Perry).

Full Review Members Only (1054 words).

Media Reviews
iVillage - Matt Berman

There's an idea in publishing that anything about children must be for children, and sometimes this leads to odd ducks like this one ... The publisher rates it for ages 8-12. While there's nothing wildly inappropriate for that age, there are long swaths of gorgeous prose that don't leave them much to chew on ... This is a delightful book, if not really for kids.

Bookpage - Deborah Hopkinson

In lyrical, lilting language, Horvath reels out a captivating tale of one girl's unforgettable summer. So don't let the days of warmth and sunshine slip away without grabbing My One Hundred Adventures and whiling away one last, magical afternoon.

Kirkus Reviews

Starred Review. Jane's poetic, philosophical musings capture a child's logic with an adult voice in this witty, wise and wonderful novel.

Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Unconventionality is Horvath’s stock and trade, but here the high quirkiness quotient rests easily against Jane’s inner story with its honest, childlike core.

School Library Journal - Connie Tyrrell Burns

Starred Review. The book is filled with pithy observations and memorable passages that invite immediate rereading and admiration. This is Horvath at the top of her game, and that's saying something. Grades 4-7

Booklist

Starred Review. Unconventionality is Horvath's stock and trade, but here the high quirkiness quotient rests easily against Jane’s inner story with its honest, childlike core.

Reader Reviews
L.C.

I DID NOT LIK IT AT ALLLL
I thought this book was a waste of my time. I thought it would be a very delightful book for a book report I had to do for my reading teacher. I WAS MISTAKEN because this book was one of the worst books I have ever read. I thought it was boring, not ...   Read More

Matt

My opinion
Hey, my opinion doesn't really matter, and I do suggest you read it, but I was waiting to get this book, and when I finally read it I was disappointed. Really! You never find out who her father is, or how many REAL adventures she had.

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Beyond the Book

Preserving the Sweetness of Summer
Jane Fielding's home and family are the center of My One Hundred Adventures. 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
from newenglandrecipes.com

1¾ quarts fully ripe strawberries
1¾ cups sugar
1 package Sure-Jell ...

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