Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Friday, June 10, 2016

The Girl in the Well is Me by Karen Rivers

How I Heard About It:  I've had this novel in my bedside table for quite some time.  I can't remember exactly where I picked it up, but for some reason I think I may have picked it up at NCTE15 this past November.  The cover and title intrigued me so I'm surprised it took me so long to read.  

What It Is About:  Kammie wants to be popular.  She especially wants to be popular because she is the new girl in school and town.  After finding out who the "cool" girls are, she works very hard to get into the "group."  What she thinks is her initiation into their club, a terrible accident occurs.  Kammie finds herself stuck in a well in the middle of a field.  At first the other girls don't take it real seriously, but then they realize she is really stuck.  Minutes turn into hours and hours turn into a day or more.  There are moments when Kammie tries to keep it under control and there are moments when she isn't sure she can stay in that well much longer.  While in the well, she begins to recall memories of her life with her friends and family.  She also creates "friends" to keep her company in the well.  Above all, she just hopes these so-called new friends will get the help she so desperately wants.  

What I Thought Of It:  When I first started the novel, I really enjoyed it and thought it was going to be a sure fire hit.  As I got to the middle and the end, things slowed down a bit for me and I didn't enjoy it as much as I thought it would.  The plot moved slowly and the "reflections" of Kammie while in the well were not that interesting to me.  I do think that younger readers would really enjoy this story.  It just didn't touch me the way I hoped it would.  

Who Should Read It:  I definitely think middle-grade and middle-school female readers would enjoy this story.  They would be able to relate to the plot and sympathize with Kammie and her need to fit in with the "cool" girls.  In my opinion, the reading level would be fourth grade and above.  I will be curious to see how this story is received by my future fourth graders next fall.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  3 STARS out of 5 Stars

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