Newbery-winning Rules meets Counting by 7s in this affecting story of a girl's devotion to her brother and what it means to be home
When eleven-year-old Thyme Owens' little brother, Val, is accepted into a new cancer drug trial, it's just the second chance that he needs. But it also means the Owens family has to move to New York, thousands of miles away from Thyme's best friend and everything she knows and loves. The island of Manhattan doesn't exactly inspire new beginnings, but Thyme tries to embrace the change for what it is: temporary.
After Val's treatment shows real promise and Mr. Owens accepts a full-time position in the city, Thyme has to face the frightening possibility that the move to New York is permanent. Thyme loves her brother, and knows the trial could save his life—she'd give anything for him to be well—but she still wants to go home, although the guilt of not wanting to stay is agonizing. She finds herself even more mixed up when her heart feels the tug of new friends, a first crush, and even a crotchety neighbor and his sweet whistling bird. All Thyme can do is count the minutes, the hours, and days, and hope time can bring both a miracle for Val and a way back home.
With equal parts heart and humor, Melanie Conklin's debut is a courageous and charming story of love and family—and what it means to be counted.
From the Hardcover edition.
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"Narrator Kathleen McInerney flawlessly depicts the joys and sorrows of 11-year-old Thyme Owens and her family as they move to New York City from San Diego to treat 5-year-old Val's nerve cancer. Listeners hear Thyme's first-person perspective as she hopes for her brother's full recovery and feel her conflicting emotions as she longs for her old life. She keeps pieces of paper that note time she "earns" doing her chores, hoping to use the time to visit California. McInerney's thoughtful rendering of Val is inspiring and heartbreaking as he bravely faces his treatments. The parents' contrasting personalities and glimpses of Thyme's school life and first crush add moments of normalcy. COUNTING THYME will help other middle schoolers coping with similar situations. S.G.B. © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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