Author: Martina Selway
Illustrator: Martina Selway
Publisher: Ideals Children’s Books
Audience: Ages 5-12
Summary: Rosie writes to her Granddad about her new school which she does not like because of her classmate Roland Roberts. Rosie has to sit next to Roland in class and Roland has been assigned to look after Rosie. Their relationship begins with Rosie hating Roland because of his rude comments and uncaring actions towards her. As their friendship develops they find that they have many interests in common and they begin to like and appreciate each other.
Literary elements at work in the story:
Genre: Friendship-Fiction; School-Fiction
Setting: Rosie finds herself having to adjust to a new school and making new friends
Characterization: Rosie enters a new school and because of the way her classmate Roland Roberts treats her she comes to the conclusion that “she hates Roland Roberts.” The author develops Rosie’s and Roland’s character as they develop a personal relationship.
Plot: Rosie forms an initial opinion—“I hate Roland Roberts” - based on first impressions but as their friendship develops over time she comes to the realization that “I really like Roland Roberts”.
Theme: There are challenges that one faces in new situations and in meeting new people but always keep an open mind and do not be too quick to judge a person.
Point of View: Written in first person through the eyes of Rosie who finds herself in a new school and having to deal with making new friends.
Style: Author uses a letter style to tell the story. Each page has an illustration on the left with the content of Rosie’s letter on the right.
Gender: Roland claims certain gender specific stereotype such as “girls are stupid and they are cry babies.” Rosie quickly dispels those thoughts.
Race: The story is specifically about Rosie who is a Caucasian female but the illustrations shows a wide cross-section of people.
Culture: Culturally generic. This could be any class room or new school situation in the world.
Ability: Rosie is just like any new student who has to deal with transitioning to a new school and making new friends. She is reluctant at first to be open to a friendship with Roland but as they spend time together she realizes that there are characteristics about him that she likes.
Scripture: Romans 12:9-10, 13
Theology: The Christian life calls us to embrace the stranger and to show them hospitality and love.
Faith Talk Questions:
- What can we learn about judging others? How do we embrace someone who is different from us?
- What are some of the ways we can embody loving our neighbor?
Review prepared by Union Presbyterian Seminary student Dee Osbourne-Smart
Filed under: Book Reviews, Books written for Grades 1 -3 (Ages 6-8), Books written for Grades 5-8 (Ages 10 -13) Tagged: | children, Compassion, Friendship, Growth, hospitality, moving, new school, openness