The Silver Star – Jeannette Walls (2013, Scribner, New York)
A plucky twelve-year-old heroine nicknamed Bean (of course) takes on the bullying, womanizing foreman of the mill in small town Byler, Virginia in Jeannette Walls’ new novel The Silver Star. If you’ve read Walls’ memoir The Glass Castle, give this one a pass – I wanted to like it, I really did, but The Silver Star is not nearly as interesting or well-written, and smacks of being slapped together in a hurry. The literary references to Edgar Allan Poe and that weird blather about the chestnuts and the emus only further muddled the plot for me. To say I was disappointed would be an understatement. Please, if you haven’t already read it, treat yourself with a copy of The Glass Castle instead.