Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Year the Swallows Came Early~ Day Two

Eleven year old Eleanor Robinson lives in California with a Daddy who calls her Groovy, and a beautician mama who is obsessed with horoscopes. She has a good friend named Frankie who, although he has a few problems of his own, is always there for Groovy. Groovy also has a dream- to become a chef and publish a book of recipes that she made up. She knows cooking school isn't cheap, so she is thankful that her great-grandmother left her some money.

Everything seems to be going fine, that is until her father gets taken away by the police. Groovy doesn't understand exactly whats going on, but she knows that she should tell her mama right away. She soon is at the Solon and tells her ama what had happened- but even more shocking than her Daddy being taken away was that her mama wasn't shocked.

Groovy's mama tells her that she shouldn't rely on what her great-grandmother left to her for cooking school, and that she should begin saving up right away. Groovy, although frustrated that her mama wont explain everything that is going on, takes her mothers advice and makes chocolate covered strawberries to sell.

Early on in the book I decided that I wanted to make chocolate covered strawberries, they jsut sounded so good! Well, Katheryn must have known that some of her readers would be compelled to do this, so she included 'Eleanor Robinson's (perfected) Secret Recipe for Chocolate Covered Strawberries' at the very end of the book. I eagerly made a couple cookie trays of them with a friend, and they were good!

Want to win a signed copy of 'The Year the Swallows Came Early'?
Just leave a comment telling about a memory you have with strawberries, and you will be entered into a drawing.

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Noël De Vries said...

I've had strep throat since we left gramma's (hope you don't get it!) and haven't eaten anything more than toast for three days. So that photo started me drooling. :) I need chocolate!

Anonymous said...

I don't need a copy of the book since I have one, but I did want to tell you readers that if they don't win here, there are a couple of other blogs giving books away.

Becky's Book Reviews is giving away a copy and so am I over at All About Children's Books.

My strawberry memories are all about strawberry shortcake on Sunday afternoons when I was little. Dad would make the shortcake from a box of Bisquick and we'd have mashed strawberries on top. Oh, so good.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, strawberries and chocolate. Does life get any better?

Strawberries always make me think of my daughter, whose love for them equals mine, and whose love for a great book is unequalled.

Thanks for the opportunity to enter!

Nicole said...

:-O!!! get well soon! we haven't gotten anything yet...

Only toast for 3 days? I wouldn't survive!

I love strawberry shortcake, too. Actually, Strawberries are one of my favorite foods...

Jody(can I call you that?):
I would have to agree that strawberries and chocolate on their own are wonderful, and when you put them together... well, life is good.

Isn't it wonderful when foods remind us of people?

windycindy said...

Hello! I am the youngest of three children. I had an older brother and I have an older sister. When we were young, our dad and mom would take us strawberry picking. Sometimes, we would be there for as long as 3 hours! To me, it seemed like forever!
What I really remember was that my siblings and I ate more strawberries
than we put in our buckets! Please enter my name in your delightful book
giveaway drawing. Such a lovely book to pass down through our family. Many thanks, Cindi

Anonymous said...

The smell of strawberries always reminds me of the strawberry scented shampoo that I used as a teenager. Ridiculous, huh?

Kim said...

Strawberries hold special memories for me of childhood. My parents planted a strawberry patch beneath a whole neighborhood of martin gourds! It was always a treasure hunt to find those wonderful berries! They have been a favorite treat to me ever since!

kimfurd at hotmail dot com

Nicole said...

strawberry picking is a lot of fun, isn't it? I am no stranger to eating more that I take home :)

ahh... fruit-scented shampoo; its a wonderful thing.

homegrown strawberries? I've always wanted to grow fruits, but I've never actually sat down to do it...

Thanks to everyone who has participated so far! I will be drawing the winning name Saturday. Anyone else is welcome to participate until midnight tonight- central time.

Anonymous said...

I picked strawberries in Sonny Swanson's strawberry patch as a summer job when I was a kid. I got a dime for every quart I picked for him. My family would go to this same strawberry patch to "Pick your own" as strawberry shortcake was my dad's favorite dessert. We'd get in strawberry fights, whipping the rotten ones at each other. By the time we got home, we'd be covered in red splats, my mom and the four of us kids. We ate our share of the ripe ones as well. Great sticky-sweet fun!

Anonymous said...

On a quest for the perfect strawberry I decided I would have to grow it myself. I used a planter box on the deck with just a few plants so I could micro-manage the process. As each berry grew into the 'almost' perfect specimen I would start to coddle it - pinch back leaves that might overshade it, remove other berries on the same stem so all of the energy would go to the SPECIAL one, test the soil PH, water, etc.. and when the time was right I would announce the grand unveiling of the PERFECT strawberry for the next day after work. The next day always found the berry missing. I thought I would never complete my quest until one evening I watched my Golden Retriever nose through all of the plants and fruit until she came to the one I had designated as the next PERFECT specimen - to be celebrated the next day. When she gently picked and ate that one (and only that one) I knew I had grown the PERFECT berry.

My dog died a couple of years ago but I still think of her and tear up whenever I see a PERFECT strawberry.

Anonymous said...

LOL Tim, the contest was to win a free novel, not to write a free novel.