Review: Four Seasons of Patrick by Susan Hughes

Posted: November 14, 2013 in Children's, Reviews
Tags: , , ,

patrick

Author:  Susan Hughes

Paperback, 74 pages

Published in 2013 by Red Deer Press

Reader Category:  Children’s

Synopsis:  It’s the start of winter, and Patrick is beginning to feel crowded out of his own family. His father’s friend, Linda, and her seven-year-old daughter, Claire, are coming for dinner again. By the time spring arrives, not only is Patrick’s father planning to marry Linda, but she and Claire will be coming to live with them at the summer’s end. That just won’t do. So Patrick comes up with a big idea. He’ll build a tree house where he can stretch out his arms and breathe. But wait. Will his father allow it? Where will he find the perfect tree? Who will give him a hand with the construction? And, most importantly, will his own tree house really be the hideaway he hopes for, especially from the irritating Claire?

As the autumn season arrives, Patrick discovers some surprising answers to these questions – and learns a little about the meaning of family.

My Review:  Using the seasons to mark the transformation of one young boys feelings toward his father’s impending re-marriage works well here.  Things are going well for Patrick during the winter where he shares some of his favorite “firsts” of the season with his best friend Harry.  As the year passes and he learns of his father’s decision to remarry, he starts to feel his world change and his once cozy home becomes too cramped even before Linda and Claire move in.  In order to satisfy his desire for space, Patrick with Harry’s help builds a tree house.  Little does he know that the tree house not only offers the space he craves, but the healing that he needs.

This was a well-written book geared toward young children who are going through similar life changes.  It is easy enough for a child to read to themselves, but would also be good read aloud in a family setting.

 

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Comments
  1. Thanks for reviewing my book, Deanna. It actually began as a picture book manuscript but then “grew” into a middle grade book. When I wrote it, I was imagining how beautiful the scenes of Patrick, or he and his pal Harry, up in the tree house would be!

    • It was my pleasure. I hope that it can help children going through the same experience. I am friends with a recent widower who has an 8 and 9 year-old and can only imagine what he has gone through and what his children might experience should they be faced with the same. I am going to keep this book at arms reach in case it can ever be of use to them. ~Deanna

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