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Mrs. Franchy's Evil Ring and the Six Months that Changed Everything
Isla Delgado is only nine years old, but she has already been through more than most kids her age. When she's forced to live with her dad and his new wife for six months, Isla's anxiety worsens. She’s convinced her stepmom is an evil witch.
Determined to protect herself, Isla sets out to expose her stepmom's true nature. But as she gets to know this new family member, Isla begins to realize that not everything is as it seems.
Join Isla on her journey of self-discovery as she learns how even the most traumatic experiences can be overcome with the power of love and understanding.
Mrs. Franchy's Evil Ring and the Six Months that Changed Everything is a heartwarming and inspiring tale about family, trust, and the power of compassion. Readers of all ages will be moved by this unforgettable story and its message of hope. Don't miss out on this must-read book!
A compassionate, witty affirmation that it’s OK to speak up - Kirkus Reviews
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Ortega presents the story of a precocious young girl on a journey to find her voice and heal from the past in this middle-grade novel.Dominican-American Isla Delgado lives in a cramped city apartment with her pregnant Mami, her stepfather, Daddy Leon, and her younger brother, Devon. Isla tends to keep her problems to herself—and she’s got plenty of them, including struggling with her fourth-grade schoolwork and trying to repress memories of the abuse she suffered as a five-year-old at the hands of her Papi’s former wife, Mrs. Maria. Now Papi has remarried again, to a woman named Francheska (“Mrs. Franchy”), and Isla must unwillingly go to live with them for six months. Inspired by a scary movie she wasn’t supposed to have seen (as well as the theory that all “fiction stems from truth”), Isla enlists the help of her best friend, Evelissé, and a bully-turned-friend, Melissa, to prove that Mrs. Franchy is an actual witch. But the more she gets to know Mrs. Franchy, the more confused about “good” and “evil” Isla becomes. The author does a phenomenal job tackling the painful subject of child abuse and its consequences. A pre-story section discusses the sensitive topics covered (such as abuse, food restriction, the pandemic, and even Santa Claus), as well as suggestions for adults on how to speak to their children about these subjects. Isla’s imagination bursts off the pages, whether she’s envisioning her mother as an angry fire-breathing dragon or suspecting that Papi’s and Mrs. Franchy’s dog, John, might actually be a kid trapped in a dog’s body. Ortega masterfully conveys the ways kids think (“Words buzz inside my head. All the words. But then it’s like a traffic jam. A word traffic jam in my head”) and feel, making it a joy to follow Isla on her journey toward overcoming trauma and expressing herself. The bold full-color illustrations by Vesle are a delightful addition.A compassionate, witty, affirmation that it’s OK to speak up.
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