May 16, 2013

The line between the real and the make-believe

A Very Fine Line
by Julie Johnston

Rosalind Kemp is the youngest of six girls, living a comfortable life in a small Ontario town in 1941. Twelve-and-a-half when we first meet her, Rosalind is artistic, active, and independent. When she starts having headaches, nosebleeds, and other queasy feelings, she discovers that she has second sight. A chance encounter with an elderly great-aunt only confirms it. Not wanting to have anything to do with it, Rosalind attempts to thwart fate by cutting her hair and pretending to be a boy. This doesn't go over well with her classmates, leading her to drop out of school. When she falls for Adrian, the tutor her mother hires, Rosalind realizes that she can't deny her so-called gift. 

An interesting take on the coming-of-age story, with warm-hearted, loving characters.

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