Because of my father’s business, as a child, I was repeatedly transferred to various elementary schools all over the US. I remember being asked if my dad was in ‘the service’. At the time I didn’t know what they we asking. But, prolific author Kimberly Willis Holt certainly does, as is revealed in her absolutely charming Piper Reed series. Every one of the five books in the series is truly remarkable. Holt has masterfully created an inquisitive, warm, funny, sensitive, likeable protagonist who struggles with dyslexia and discovering the nuances of being a Navy brat.
There is a scene in the latest book in the series, Piper Reed, Rodeo Star, where Piper must say goodbye to her friends who have been transferred to Norfolk. Her friends are in the SUV and she must let them go. She sees their mother coming outside carrying her purse. Piper says “…so I knew what that meant. My stomach ached something awful, like I’d swallowed a basketball (45).” The words I knew what that meant speak volumes. Piper is familiar with the pain of separation. She’s been in this place before. Yet, spunky Piper will survive because that is what Navy brats do.
Consider reading this lively Piper Reed series with your child over the summer months, won’t you? Together you’ll laugh, cry, and possibly bond a bit closer while doing so. If not this series, I cannot more vehemently encourage you to read with or to your children often throughout the summer months. Sharing a story, connecting with a character, discussing the delights and dilemmas characters face – these are all memories to treasure together forever. I know this to be true. I read with my kids when they were little and we’re all still glad we did.
For now, wishing you lots of summertime love, laughs, and entertaining page turns.