Title: Girl Coming In For A Landing
Author: April Halprin Wayland
# Of Pages: 144
Publication Date: August 13, 2002
Level: Middle Grade
Rating: 2 Hearts
You walk into class
my head clears.
You are my aspirin.
One girl. One school year. All poems. From friends to first dates, school dances to family fights, this inspiring collection captures the emotional highs and lows of teen life with refreshing honesty and humor.
Girl Coming In For A Landing was different from most other novels in verse that I’ve read. While all of the poems did work together to tell one story, I felt as if each poem worked better on its own than as one big flowing story. It just felt disjointed to me.
The story was told from first person point-of-view, therefore we never even learned the name of our main character. While there was a small cast of side characters they were not a main focus of the story nor were they memorable enough for me to even remember their names. The first person point-of-view did not work to the benefit of the reader. Most of the time whenever the main character would say “we did this” or “we did that” you had no clue which person she was talking about. I was always thinking to myself you did that with who?? WHO ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT!
My favorite thing about the book was all of the illustrations, which were done by Elaine Clayton. Each page was like a work of art, tying in with each poem and really helping to bring the words to life. For me, this really added to the overall reading experience.
I feel like this book focused more on the poetic side of things, than telling a complete story. My favorite poem from the book was the passage entitled “TAKING VIOLIN.”
“I open my case
tighten my bow
pluck a string to tune.
I love to listen to it chirp across the echoing room.
My friends are in class
a famous English King.
But I am training this wooden bird upon my arm to sing.”
Overall, I just wasn’t able to connect with this story. It ended and I was just like huh? It all felt so pointless. Like what did I even just read about for the last hour?