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Fiction Ages 12+
Pages: 256
Themes: Foster care system, adoption, learning disabilities
Publisher: Second Story Press
Pub Date: 01/Aug/2011
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Her name is Sadie, but she might as well be called Fostergirl. That's how everyone thinks of her. Sadie doesn't care. In fact, she'd be happier if they didn't think of her at all. Her goal is to go unnoticed and disappear until she reaches the age of sixteen and can apply for legal emancipation. Now she finds herself in another new high school, another new group home—number thirteen, but who's counting? This time there's a girl at her school named Rhiannon, who won't let her be invisible and insists on being her friend, and a guidance counselor, who won't give up trying to find out why Sadie has such a hard time in English class. Their belief in her might be able to restore Sadie's belief in others, and maybe even herself. But a person from her past and a shocking accident threaten to turn Sadie back to the safety of her self-imposed isolation.

CM Magazine
"Shaw gives a realistic portrayal of a foster girl's life of uncertainty, hopelessness, and the inability to change her environment. She cannot make decisions; she has no choice about whom she lives with and where she lives. The novel realistically shows the solitude and loneliness Sadie goes through as she tries to figure out what she wants and who she is. After reading this novel, readers will realize that there is always light and hope in the next corner. Recommended."
Libraries and Young Adults blog
"The first-person perspective is what makes the book for me. Being inside Sadie's mind is the best way to understand her avoidance of friendship and her difficulties with school work. From the very first chapter Shaw had me interested in the point of view with this description of the school system...This is an important novel for anyone to read."
Resource Links
"There is much about this book that speaks to the foster system's well-meaning but often flawed initiatives and how easily these initiatives can be misinterpreted or go horribly wrong. Sadie's character is genuinely engaging and portrayed against the backdrop of adolescent angst and an often inadequate system, it works."
Publishers Weekly
"Sadie, though tough as nails, narrates her story with an amusing edginess that works...For readers seeking an honest account of how a girl without parents survives, this story delivers."
"Sadie's struggle to overcome the cards she has been dealt is inspiring, and the author writes from a very honest and real perspective. Sadie's story will resonate with readers, no matter their background. Her experiences, feelings, and actions are common among teens...Recommended for all public and school collections."
School Library Journal
"An authentic and accurate story...Will engage many reluctant readers and fans of problem novels, and it will have a special appeal to other 'fostergirls' and those struggling with learning disabilities or school."
Library of Clean Reads blog
"Fostergirls will be counted among my favourite reads of 2011...The author's professional experience in the field of education shone through in this novel and she portrayed the challenges both of the foster care parents and the kids, as well as the school system so realistically...Overall, this was an inspiring and revealing book. I highly recommend it to teens, social workers, parents, and teachers. What a great read!"


OLA Best Bets  | 2011 | Commended

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