Sunday, January 3, 2010

ACCORDING TO KIT by Eugenie Doyle

Kit has lived her entire life on a Vermont dairy farm.  Her life is one constant routine.  It starts with the morning milking and chores and ends with the same at night.  The only variety is her dancing.

Things change a bit the fall she turns fifteen.  When a crazy kid in her high school science class takes out a knife and cuts another student, Kit's mother decides she's had it with public education.  She pulls Kit from the high school and tells her she will be homeschooling from now on.   But homeschooling for the daughter of busy farmers turns into Kit taking care of her own learning. 

At first it seems like fun, but things get boring pretty quickly.  Math means helping her mother with the farm accounting, science is helping with the chores and milking and listening to her father's schemes to increase revenue for the farm.  She reads a lot and decides to keep working on the research she started at school for a project about bats that fascinates her.  Physical education is, of course, her dance classes.  One benefit of the homeschooling deal with her mother is that her dance classes increase to three times a week.

Being around her parents 24/7 doesn't always bring out the best in everyone.  Kit is fairly certain that her mother tries to be as mean as possible by complaining and finding fault in everything.  Her father attempts to calm the waters between mother and daughter, but often the only escape Kit can find is heading down to her grandfather's trailer or going up into the haymow to dance away the stress.

ACCORDING TO KIT by Eugenie Doyle is the story of one year in the life of a young girl whose dreams of an exciting future don't fit with her dairy farm lifestyle.  As her day-to-day story unfolds, readers get to know Kit and will admire her determination to make her dreams of dancing as important to her mother as they are to her.

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