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The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate

Author: Jacqueline Kelly

Review by: By: Anna M., 9th grade

The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate
Have your parents ever wanted you to do something with your life that you didn’t agree with?
In Jacqueline Kelly’s turn of the century book about Calpurnia Tate, or known by her family as Callie Vee, an eleven year old girl living on a farm in Texas. She is the only girl of six children and you can imagine that with that many brothers it was all the much harder for her to act like a lady of her age. Once women of that time got to be about Calpurnia’s age they needed to start acting like it, dressing like it and speaking like it but Calpurnia has so much more she wants to do with her life. She has just discovered her love for the world around her thanks to her thought by all to be a crazy environmentalist grandfather. She wants to go to the university and become a famous scientist someday why in the world would she want to learn to do all the things women do cooking, sewing, and knitting? Now she needs to figure out how to tell her mother.

This was one of the best books I have read for awhile. The writing was easy to follow, but still engaging. The chapters followed each other nicely and made sense instead of skipping from one idea to a whole other one. The book did move pretty fast and not dwell on one subject for too long which was sometimes a little confusing since it left out some important details although it was easy to figure out what was happening on your own.

I would recommend this book for seventh to ninth graders who enjoy fictional books that could very well be a real life story and even could happen to them. People who enjoy creating their own scenes in their head and watching the book play out in their head would definetly enjoy this book. In this book imagination is only a page away.


3 responses »

  1. This sounds like a really fascinating book! Thanks for writing a review on it. I am going to add it to my long list of to-read books!

  2. I can relate to Callie a lot. It sounds like a wonderful book and I will certainly check it out. Living with five brothers would be VERY hard. I can’t imagine!!!

  3. Anna,

    I recently read this book as well and loved it. You wrote a terrific review without giving away too much of the book. You make a great point when you mention that it is a great book for people who like to create scenes in their head and watch them play out. That is, in my opinion, the best thing about a great book. Very good review.


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