Summary: A photograph of a missing girl on a milk carton leads 15-year-old Janie to think she was kidnapped a decade ago. So she goes on a search for her real identity.
"Janie finished her essay. She never knew what grade she would get in Mr. Brylowe's English class. Whenever she joked, he wanted the essay serious. Whenever she was serious, he had intended the essay to be light-hearted."I was curious enough to keep reading after those opening lines, but more because of the mystery of that face on a milk carton. Writing an essay? That's what I do when I review a book. On the other hand, when I was her age, I also had to learn about writing and (as I read on the next page or so) thought about names. She thinks "Jane" is too plain, so she considers "Jayne." I, on the other hand, was the only Bonnie I knew, besides the aunt I was named for, so I longed for a more usual kind of name. I guess all kids feel weird about something.
I kept reading this book, but I wasn't imagining how it would feel if I'd been taken from my mom and dad, as I think most teens would, but as the mom wondering where her daughter was. For example, this section really got to me. All I could think was that her mother had missed all of these life events.
"Janie climbed the stairs to her room, passing by the ascending wall of photographs. Her parents disliked albums: they immortalized Janie on the stairs. Janie at the beach, on skis, in a Scout uniform, in her first dancing dress. Janie on their trip to the Grand Canyon. Janie in gymnastics. Janie at the Middle School Awards Ceremony. Janie on the runway for the fashion show the hospital sponsored as a benefit" (p. 26).Why was this book banned? I can't imagine, since there's nothing in it that seems objectionable. Janie and a boy had an opportunity for sex, but didn't. Yet in 2002-2003, it was challenged in Texas Public Schools for "sexual content and challenge to authority." Ignore them and read the book, which kept me turning the pages. When I learned there are three more books in the series, I got online tonight and put them on hold at my library so I can read.....
Whatever happened to Janie? (1993)I rate this one 9 of 10, an excellent book. Also posted on my Banned Books blog.
The Voice on the Radio (1996)
What Janie Found (2000)
If you want to play along, this meme is hosted by Katy at A Few More Pages. Share the first sentence or two of the book you are reading. (Sometimes it takes several sentences to get the full thought.) Then, share your impressions of that beginning. Click this link to see what others say about the books they are reading this week.