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Gr. 3^-5. This heartfelt memoir takes readers back to 1949 when the author, at age 12, contracted polio. Using fictionalised dialogue, she describes her seven-month ordeal--her diagnosis and quarantine, her terrifying paralysis, her slow and difficult recuperation--and the people she encountered along the way. Kehret supplies a few words about the illness in a foreword, but because there is little sense of how medicine has evolved since her hospitalisation, some children may find the vivid picture she paints scary indeed. Scary, too, is the epilogue, in which Kehret admits to having post-polio syndrome. Curious children who love Kehret's middle-grade thrillers may pick this up, but since there's little about her life as a writer, it will most likely be children interested in medical issues who will follow through. Stephanie Zvirin --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Gr 4-6-Although young readers today might only associate the word "polio" with a vaccination, this well-written account gives them a hard look at the devastating physical and emotional effects of the disease. In l949, there were 42,000 cases reported in the U.S.; the author was the only one stricken in her hometown that year. She writes in an approachable, familiar way, and readers will be hooked from the first page on. The author details her diagnosis, treatment, frustration, and pain. Perhaps the most startling part of the book is her description of the sudden onset of the illness, coming with no warning and leaving her paralyzed. Although this is an excellent record of the progress of the disease, it is also a fascinating account of how an ordinary girl with crushes and homecoming dreams had to live for part of her adolescence in an artificial, restricted environment. In the epilogue, Kehret describes her current battle with post-polio syndrome, and brings readers up to date on the lives of her fellow patients and friends at the Sheltering Arms Hospital. An honest and well-done book.-Christine A. Moesch, Buffalo & Erie County Public Library, NY
"An honest and well-done book."School Library Journal