The Blueberry Balladeer

The Blueberry Balladeer
Age Range
12+
Release Date
March 20, 2022
ISBN13
979-8-9857446-0-6
ISBN10 or ASIN
      
Darcy Pickens is fed up. She didn’t do anything wrong in turning her best friend Grace's face watermelon green at eighth grade graduation. After all, Grace had it coming. She fell for Darcy’s crush and just had to be the prettiest girl in school. Yet, Darcy’s lack of remorse for her wrongdoing causes her to find herself living in Maine for the summer with her Aunt Freydah and Uncle Petah on their blueberry farm. Life in Maine seems dull at first, but quickly turns interesting, thanks to magical, mysterious happenings that make her aunt and uncle’s blueberry crop disappear. She works to save the farm and learn the morals she has been fighting so hard against, all while fighting the owners of the neighboring blueberry farm with whom Aunt Freydah has maintained her own lifelong feud. In order to make things right at the farm, Darcy finds out that her friend Grace is the only one who can help. Reminiscent of the magical elements of Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White, The Blueberry Balladeer combines envy, honesty, kindness, forgiveness, and trust to form its own web of beauty and intrigue.

Editor review

1 review
Truth and Self-Worth
Overall rating
 
5.0
Writing Style
 
5.0
Plot
 
5.0
Characters
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
 
N/A
‘The Blueberry Balladeer’ by Andrew Frodahl is a tale of truth and discovering one’s self-worth. When Darcy Pickens plays a nasty trick on a friend to damage her reputation, she finds herself in hot water. With eighth grade finally over and ninth grade looming, her parents send her away for the summer, in an attempt to make her realize that kindness is more important than envy.

Darcy goes into the experience fully expecting to hate it. When she meets Uncle Petah and Aunt Freydah, she thinks her parents are playing a cruel joke on her, sending her to live in the middle of a blueberry farm with an eccentric aunt and uncle who live their lives with no electricity or even a working bathroom. She also finds herself stuck sharing a room with an orphan girl named Itsie whom her aunt and uncle have taken in for the summer along with two other boys who are living in the house.

Before she knows what hit her, she becomes invested in the state of the blueberry farm. When she unwittingly exacerbates a lifelong feud between her Aunt Freydah and Melly Nellywort, who owns the neighboring blueberry farm, she realizes that her life is not so different from her aunt’s, and maybe she truly does have something to learn while staying in Maine for the summer.

Darcy is inspired throughout the story to be better than who she’s been, and while she strives to hold others accountable for their actions, she comes to understand that she, too, must be held accountable for hers. She discovers magic and mysterious beings that upend her sense of normal and sometimes make her question her sanity, but she learns that encouraging the magic and taking her own hard look in the mirror at who she is and who she hopes to be help unleash the best version of herself.
Good Points
Darcy is inspired throughout the story to be better than who she’s been, and while she strives to hold others accountable for their actions, she comes to understand that she, too, must be held accountable for hers. She discovers magic and mysterious beings that upend her sense of normal and sometimes make her question her sanity, but she learns that encouraging the magic and taking her own hard look in the mirror at who she is and who she hopes to be help unleash the best version of herself.
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