“Don’t judge a man until you’ve walked two moons in his moccasins.” (Walk Two Moons)
So in the midst of all I’ve been doing (prepping for new job and getting number 1 son ready to leave home for college) I’ve been reading The Wanderer by Sharon Creech. While I was reading The Wanderer I was reminded of another of Creech’s books called Walk Two Moons. Walk Two Moons is a Newberry Medal winner and The Wanderer is an Honor book, so you can’t go wrong reading either one.
Without giving too much away, I realized the stories are similar because of their characters. The main characters are young teenage girls. Both come from “interesting” households (SPOILER: each child has lost at least one parent in the story) that make the story quirky, heartwarming and bittersweet. Creech has found a way to discuss death and dying and grief and loss in a way that isn’t creepy but that is kind of introspective and sometimes humorous. The stories are more about how the girl’s carry on with their lives that are quite unique. In The Wanderer, the main character, Sophie, sails across the ocean with her uncles and cousins. In Walk Two Moons, Sal rides across the country with her very odd, but loving, grandparents.
Naturally, in the end, each girl learns and grows from her journeys. I guess you could say that the journeys they take are not only physical but spiritual, as well. I really like how an active fantasy life helps the characters cope with their losses.
The main characters are not of any particular ethnicity, although Sal claims to be part Seneca Indian. But, I like how every character in the stories are quirky and have their own problems (loss of a parent, loss of a job, parent remarrying) which some do well and some not so well. It is these types of situations that feel like they fit the multicultural litmus test.
I give BOTH books 3 paws!