I read and reviewed another book earlier this summer by Ms. Kring and really enjoyed it, so I wanted to give another of her books a try. How High the Moon was very cute and at times funny, and I give it a B+.
In this tender novel set in 1955 Mill Town, Wisconsin, Sandra Kring explores the complicated bond between mothers and daughters, the pressure to conform, and the meaning of friendship and family. Ten-year-old Isabella “Teaspoon” Marlene has been a handful ever since her mother, Catty, dumped her with an old boyfriend and ran off to Hollywood. Teaspoon fights, fibs, never stops singing, and is as unpredictable and fearless as a puppy off its leash. Still, Teddy Favors, a man who has taken his share of kicks, is determined to raise her right. Teaspoon wants to be better for Teddy—even if that means agreeing to take part in a do-gooder mentorship program and being paired up with Brenda Bloom, the beautiful reigning Sweetheart of Mill Town. Against all odds, as the summer passes, this unlikely duo discover a special friendship as they face personal challenges, determined to follow their hearts instead of convention. It’s while Brenda and Teaspoon are putting together the grandest show the Starlight Theater has ever seen that Catty returns to Mill Town, shattering illusions and testing loyalties. But by the final curtain call, one determined little girl shows an entire town the healing that can happen when you let your heart take center stage.
I absolutely adored the main character Teaspoon and she often brought a smile to my face. This book was touching and sad at the same time, but Teaspoon shows spunk and is enthausastic throughout it all. I loved how she didn't understand some things and her explanations for those actions. One of my favorite was how she thought two women who were really prostitutes just like to go for rides in people's cars. Through her naiviete, Teaspoon gets to know people for who they are and not what people think they are. I believe there is a good lesson here for everyone to learn while reading an enjoyable and pleasant book. I will definitely be reading more by Ms. Kring in the future.