One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street
By Joanne Rocklin
201 pages – for middle grade readers
This book begins with a mysterious man and an orange construction cone placed in the street by the vacant lot. This lot is home to an orange tree – the only one remaining from an old grove. A cause for questioning looks, remembered stories and new found confidence. The orange tree is at the center of activity for the people who live on Orange Street. It is source of a wonderful smell and delicious fruit. It is where the club meets. It’s where treasure is found that, just maybe, will bring luck. It’s where a lonely boy practices and practices. It’s where a now silent child swings and a worried daughter keeps vigil. It is a reminder of days gone by and of how friends and families change around you.
One Day and One Amazing Morning on Orange Street is a story of friendship and kindnesses. It is a story about troubles and anxieties. It is a story about guilt and understanding. The characters are interesting and real. I like that they are not prefect and struggle to deal with parts of themselves and their lives that are less than storybook perfect. I like how past and present are melded together so we learn about the history of the tree too. I think it is supposed to have a happy ending, but I’m not certain that it does. After you read it, let me know what you think.