Another Day As Emily by Eileen Spinelli
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release Date: May 13, 2014
When Suzy Q's next door neighbor collapses, it is Suzy's brother who comes to her rescue, calling 911 and becoming an instant hero. Caught up in his fifteen minutes of fame, Suzy is rather jealous. Feeling cast aside, Suzy decides that she is going to live like Emily Dickinson, in a life of solitude and white dresses. Her parents are worried, but Suzy is sure that this will help her to be who she really is--Emily.
I am afraid that his book, despite how well-written it is, has a very narrow audience. Elementary school age girls who like very character-driven novels in verse and have some interest in Emily Dickinson or at least an interest in 19th century history. This is what I would typically consider a "quiet book". There is very little in the way of a plot and most of the story deals with Suzy's feelings, which are very age-accurate and relateable.
A poetry expert I am not, however I thought that the writing was good, but felt more like paired down prose rather than the kind of poetry I found in books like Out of the Dust and Love That Dog. Also, not being much of a poetry expert, I need someone else to tell me how appealing Emily Dickinson really is to a 10 year-old girl? I mean, I remember Jane Austen and the Bronte sisters being a big deal to some of my teenage friends, but was Emily Dickinson? Will this book really grab attention or will it go gently into the night? (yes, that was a purposeful Dylan Thomas reference...see, I do know some poetry)