Tuck Everlasting

Our rating: ****

Once, eighty-seven years ago, the Tuck family stopped to drink from a spring in the woods. Then they discovered that this spring granted them eternal life, so they have lived unchanging for eighty-seven years. But then, young Winnie Foster sees Jesse Tuck drinking from the spring. The Tucks believe it would be a disaster for the world to know about the spring, and so they are forced to kidnap Winnie and tell her the whole story. And then a man shows up, searching for the Tucks to learn their secret of eternal life.

Would it really be a great thing to live forever in this world, unchanged and unchanging? Tuck Everlasting may change your mind if you think so. This is my favorite of Natalie Babbitt’s books. All of the characters feel very real, and the question that the story revolves around is worth exploring. Every character thinks differently about the spring, some thinking that it’s a gift, others feeling that they have been cursed by the waters. Not to be missed.

Kneeknock Rise

Our rating: **½

The small village of Instep lies at the foot of Kneeknock Rise. All of the villagers are frightened of a monster that they call the Megrimum, which lives on the rise and howls every time it rains. But the villagers are also proud of the monster, so they have a fair every year to show off the monster. One year, young Egan comes to visit his aunt and uncle at fair time, and his cousin dares him to climb Kneeknock Rise. Is the Megrimum really up there?

Although this story is quite predictable (you probably know how it ends), it is also enjoyable enough to read while waiting for the next book blockbuster. Babbitt spins a tale that will delight readers, which should influence them to read one of her better stories.