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Kathryn Reiss

Autor(a) de Time Windows

21+ Works 2,391 Membros 43 Reviews 4 Favorited

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Includes the name: REISS KATHRYN

Image credit: Mills College


Obras de Kathryn Reiss

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Cleaning through my library pile for the end of the year! Also feeling a tad completionist since i've read other Julie mysteries and should just get through them all.

The Silver Guitar is a classic whodunnit when a precious cultural artifact (not!JimiHendrix's guitar) goes missing before an auction to benefit sea birds dying from an oil spill in San Francisco's bay. Suspects include the rich people's live-in nephew, the nosy neighbor, the housekeeper, and the skateboard kid, among others. Julie also learns that the world isn't black and white and even though it'd be nice to paint the oil tankers as evil, maybe they had a bad day doing their jobs so society can continue to be fueled (but also heyyyy oil companies have definitely contributed to stifling moves to prevent climate catastrophe so maybe a mixed lesson here).… (mais)
Daumari | 1 outra resenha | Dec 28, 2023 |
When I started this, I thought "oh man, American Girl's about to teach kids about communes: let's see how well this goes in chapterbook format" but, it was really well crafted- a mystery with multiple potential suspects (and enough tells to indicate some obvious ones were red herrings but still stringing the reader along) and planting some seeds for young readers to think about how farm communities can change to stay afloat while not betraying their structure. Like [b:The Tangled Web: A Julie Mystery|4520292|The Tangled Web A Julie Mystery (American Girl Mysteries)|Kathryn Reiss|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1416035167l/4520292._SX50_.jpg|4569374], the Vietnam War floats indirectly as the reason why some of the adults have made certain choices, but as Julie is a 10 year old, she doesn't know the nitty gritty details of that.… (mais)
Daumari | Dec 28, 2023 |
This was okay. The mystery here is facts that just don't add up, and why people might pretend to have a different life altogether. Peppered throughout are specific mentions of both San Francisco and 1970s themes: shell-shocked young Vietnam vets, the fight for disability accessibility rights, and the growing popularity of farmers markets/"California cuisine". It still makes me pause for a moment to consider my parents would be peers with Julie's sister Tracy, but time marches on and the youth of seniors today is history.

I wasn't originally going to include the mystery books in my American Girl exploration, but figured I may as well, for completionist's sake. I never actually read any of the old mysteries, and looking at Kathryn Reiss's bibliography it looks like she did novels in the historical mystery line that aren't connected to the doll series- am curious about those.
… (mais)
Daumari | outras 3 resenhas | Dec 28, 2023 |
One of the unintentional themes of my 2019 reading is a review of juvenile Asian American historical fiction that I've read or wish I could've read when I was younger, and this is the third book so far that's covered the Angel Island detainment experience ([b:The Fire Horse Girl|14746310|The Fire Horse Girl|Kay Honeyman|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1358879637l/14746310._SX50_.jpg|20395318] is decidedly YA; [b:The Dragon's Child: A Story of Angel Island|2651237|The Dragon's Child A Story of Angel Island|Laurence Yep|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1348607341l/2651237._SY75_.jpg|2097030] is biographical and I feel like the Jimmy Yep character might be a nod to Laurence here).

As with the other Julie books, I really wish Ivy had been the lead here- while I do respect Julie as a character, and she's the perfect proxy for most readers (who I assume are predominantly white and/or not aware of Asian American history) it's a little strange that she's putting forth all this effort and energy into solving the mystery behind what happened to Ivy's grandmother's friend. Maybe because it's a distraction from the kinda-on-the-nose parallel in her own home with a newcomer coming to stay with them for a few months? I haven't read the Marie Grace and Cecile books yet, but I do wonder if a co-lead series would've worked here. Ivy was/is the only Asian American historical character (something I desperately wanted as a kid in the '90s), but isn't currently available except via this and her own bonus book. It sometimes feels like there's an assumption that Asian Americans are recent immigrant waves with no discernible history, but we've had a presence in North America for over a century and a half despite the "best" efforts of xenophobic policy makers attempting to block immigration.

Still, this book is well-written and the Chinatown elders being reluctant to revisit painful parts of the past rings true to the tight lips encountered when asking my aunties questions about my own Gung-gung and Po-po who passed before I was born. Early on we get a good introduction to the kind of questions immigration officials asked detainees with Po Po's crib sheet from her mother- how many steps in the stairs of your house? How many houses on your street? Who was your teacher, and where did they live? I've read the transcripts for one of my great-grandfather's interview and they really WERE that intense. Introducing young readers to the first immigration restrictions in the United States is a crucial reminder as we repeat history of detaining some immigrants for unspecified amounts of time in an unnecessarily cruel and arbitrary system.

Probably should have some more words for Julie herself here too- unlike [b:Good Luck, Ivy|976423|Good Luck, Ivy (American Girls Julie)|Lisa Yee|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1348021531l/976423._SX50_.jpg|961319] or [b:Happy New Year, Julie 1974|1840745|Happy New Year, Julie 1974 (American Girls Julie #3)|Megan McDonald|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1347806474l/1840745._SX50_.jpg|1840961] it definitely has the period vibe (Julie's sister Tracy is on the school committee for the Valentine Disco, one of Andrew Ling's friends is really into the Green Hornet (but why not Kato? Though I'd guess that's probably Andrew's fave because he was played by Bruce Lee!), phone accessibility, etc.) How groovy. I didn't recognize two of Julie's school friends, and I wonder if they're from the other Julie mystery books? There wasn't a specific order so I kind of went specifically for the one that I knew I'd be interested in.

tl;dr I really liked this but I'm still frustrated that Ivy isn't the main character and that this also could've been an #ownvoices book (and sure, to answer an inevitable "why don't you write what you want to see" I could try but cribbing from family history would take some digging and I know that's not entirely mine to share, but! I know I'm far from the only 3 gen ABC)
… (mais)
Daumari | outras 2 resenhas | Dec 28, 2023 |



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