Agnes Duncan’s heart- wrenching decision to sell the Sleepy Time Motel is the impetus for change in Greetings from Nowhere by Barbara O'Connor. The recent passing of her beloved husband, coupled with mounting bills, constant repairs, and a lack of customers, forces Aggie to list her home and small hotel in the Smokey Mountains of North Carolina for sale. Aggie’s advertisement is read by Clyde Dover, a father looking for a fresh start with his daughter Willow, who soon purchases the hotel. The Dover family’s pending arrival is preceded by the first real customer’s the Sleepy Time Motel has had in a long time. Loretta Murphy and her family arrive on a family vacation retracing steps in a keepsake box her birth mother has bequeathed. Kirby Tanner is on his way to the disciplined Smokey Mountains Boy’s Academy with his mother when their car breaks down near the Motel. Aggie, Willow, Loretta, and Kirby are each struggling with changes wrought in their lives, looking for answers to life questions and trying to understand where to go from here. What they find is friendship and understanding from an unlikely source, each other.
I enjoyed reading this book; characters are believable, maturation of the characters within the story was well concieved, and the author resisted the temptation for a standard happily-ever-after. Readers will enjoy the story's journey as well as it's realistic conclusion. For more information, see the author's blog: Greetings from Nowhere and website. When I viewed it (several weeks ago), Greetings from Nowhere was not included, however there are Teacher and Discussion Guides.
Thanks to the comment from Barbara O'Connor, I am updating the above information to include a link to the new teachers guide for Grettings from Nowhere. Also on the site, along with reviews and a book synopsis, is a book trailer. Cool.
Tags: Greetings from Nowhere, Barbara O'Connor, Juvenile fiction