Gina Filomena has quite an imagination and a great sense of style, but some kids make fun of her. New neighbors move in next door and they have a boy, Antonio, who is Gina’s age. They will be in the same class. Their new teacher, Miss Lighthouse, is very creative and fun. She doesn’t have a lot of rules, and she gives the class interesting writing assignments that won’t be graded. It’s a very different classroom, and soon all the students seem to be having a better time than they have ever had in school before. Antonio is a favorite in the class, but one day he doesn’t show up. Because Gina is his neighbor, everyone expects her to know what happened, but she doesn’t know anything. Another day, Miss Lighthouse is gone and a sub comes in. That is when the children really learn to appreciate what a wonderful teacher they have.
Author Sharon Creech has written a sweet, highly imaginative book that will delight young readers. Her writing is gorgeous, the characters are well-developed and engaging, and the story is unique and compelling. This book deserves to be read well beyond the designated middle-grade audience.
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