BookDragon Books for the Diverse Reader

heartbeat by Sharon Creech

HeartbeatI fully admit to being poetically challenged (damaged?). I don’t get musicals either. But something about free verse is sooo gloriously addictive – when the rhythm is just right and you can’t seem to put the pages down … or turn the iPod off in this case. Memorable, resonating poetry – like Creech’s heartbeat – is best listened to, I’ve been told, and even better read aloud by someone else. So tune in!

Choosing to click on heartbeat was incredibly serendipitous … because I really have started training with Born to Run‘s Eric Orton (just pinch me!), and the heartbeat right now is what every run is about! So just as Creech’s Annie runs for pure joy, thoroughly enjoying the “thump-thump, thump-thump” of her efforts, I try to join right in, hoping that her youthful energy might inspire me to keep going without keeling over too soon!.

At 12, Annie is just on the cusp of major changes: as her new baby brother’s life is about to begin, her elderly grandfather doesn’t remember too well anymore and talks too often of when he will no longer be with the family. Her best friend Max seems to suddenly resent her, and even the track coach won’t leave her alone about joining the team. A surprising school art project – to document an apple every day for 100 days – brings out life’s details and perspectives in new ways for the curious Annie … as she constantly adjusts and adapts to the rhythms of her evolving young life.

Time to get off now and share in Annie’s joyful running … thump-thump, thump-thump indeed!

Readers: Middle Grade

Published: 2004



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