The Girl Who Could Silence the Wind
Grades 6-10
Saturday, December 24, 2011
by: Dr. Jamie Campbell Naidoo

Section: Young Adult Book Reviews

Grades 6-10

Reviewed by Dr. Jamie Campbell Naidoo. Assistant & Foster-EBSCO Endowed Professor School of Library & Information Studies University of Alabama. He received his Ph.D. in Communication and Information Studies from the University of Alabama and holds a Masters of Library and Information Studies from the University of Alabama.

Cursed by milagros?! Although most people would consider miracles to be a blessing, sixteen-year-old Sonia finds that her life is weighed down by the expectations that her presumed miracles can heal the sick and dying. Almost every day a neighbor or friend will visit her and pin a metal charm (a milagro) on Sonia’s shawl and ask for her prayer and healing.  When a dear friend dies and Sonia is unable to save him, she begins to accept what she’s known for a long time – she is a fraud and does not have the power to grant miracles. When an opportunity arises for her to go to the city for a well-paying job, Sonia jumps at the chance to leave behind the weight of the milagros and the inevitable life of poverty that she is destined to have in her rural village of Tres Montes.  The same day her brother decides to seek his own fortunes and begins a journey that may cost him his life. It will be up to Sonia use her inner strength to perform a much-needed miracle. Medina’s storytelling includes enough mystery, magical realism, and milagros to keep younger teens engaged. Both Sonia and her orphan-poet boyfriend are well-drawn characters that readers will long remember after the last page.  Recommended.

The Girl Who Could Silence the Wind. Meg Medina. Somerville, MA: Candlewick Press, 2012. 256 pp. $17.99 (Hardcover). ISBN 978-0-7636-4602-8. Grades 6-10. English with Some Spanish.

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