Friday, May 06, 2011

Tall Story by Candy Gourlay

Summary: Bernardo is tall. And being tall is great: gloating about your height, towering above your friends, and dunking the basketball. But Bernardo is tall. Very tall. Bernardo is 8 feet tall. And when you are 8 feet tall, things become difficult: walking, running, wearing pants, bathing yourself, and pretty much everything in life. And coincidentally, Bernardo lives in the Philippines in a small town where earthquakes are common; legend has it that a giant came to save the town from destruction. Common belief has that Bernardo is their hero. Andi, on the other hand, is short. Being short is great: staying hidden, sneaking around, staying dry (because tall people are the first to get wet). But a basketball player has no place being short; height is a necessity. Andi doesn’t need to be 10 feet tall to make the basketball team; her skills make up for her height (or lack thereof). Of course, as soon as the girls’ team recognizes her talents her family moves. The only thing that Andi can look forward to when moving is the chance of a new basketball team. But her dreams are shot out of the air when it turns out that her new school doesn’t have a girls’ program. Then one day, the phone rings; Bernardo, Andi’s older brother whom she has never met, is coming back to live with them. But Andi is simply told that Bernardo is tall. When they go to pick up Bernardo at the airport, Andi has no problem seeing him whatsoever. With a sibling who is nearly twice her height, she has large shoes to fill (literally); will she be able to fill them? Will Bernardo be able to fit in where people expect too much out of him? Will Andi be able to swallow her pride and let Bernardo into her life? Or will the family be torn apart. In a heartwarming tall tale, a family comes together, dreams will be made, and lessons will be learned.

Opinion: With 3 siblings, family is very important in my personal life. I find it amazing to hear about a fantastic family and their coming together. This book does just that, and does it wonderfully. Told from the point of view from the two main characters, the readers are able to experience both sides of a story. I love the writing style when comparing Andi and Bernardo’s thoughts. Tall Story is a perfect book for ages 10-13, both in vocabulary and content. I believe that readers between these ages will be able to connect perfectly to either Bernardo or Andi. I recommend Tall Story, by Candy Gourlay to any person wishing to read a book that they can actually connect with.

Content: 1
Rating (0 - 10 scale): 7
Reviewer Age: 14
Reviewer City, State and Country: Oakmont, PA USA