A Girl Named Willow Krimble
By: Giuseppe Bianco
Publication Date: January 19, 2011
Genre: Middle Grade
I am normally an adult genre reviewer. However, when A Girl Named Willow Krimble was offered up in the nest, I was drawn to it & claimed it. It took me a while to finally get to it, with life and the epically long A Dance With Dragons read. Mr. Bianco was even kind enough to send me a paperback, to save my poor eyes from having to read it off a computer.
It took me a chapter or two to really get into this book - Not due to the author's prowess, but because it is so far removed from what I usually read that it took me a minute to find my reading groove. Once I found it, I was cruising right along with Willow and her best friend, the quirky and hilarious Razzel. Together we traverse the halls of Ginkelman Middle School (which gave me flashbacks both good and bad) as Willow tries to remain strong and out of the way of the Plastics-esque queens of the school, Snella and Shayla.
Life is hard enough at 13, but to add to it, Willow is smart, kind and has a prosthetic left leg - All of which make her a target for mean girl behavior. When Willow discovers she has the ability to heal through the power of touch, it gets a whole lot more complicated. Willow chooses to figure her gift out on her own, until a fateful talent show accident brings an old friend back into her life. She soon realizes she can't heal everyone, and suffers heartache and loss with amazing aplomb and maturity. The characters are believable, funny and endearing. This book is a great read, no matter what your age.
So, you’ve just discovered that the person who has tormented, mocked and humiliated you for the past three years is lying in the school parking lot, bleeding internally from a hit and run accident. No one else is around and you need to get to a life-and-death family emergency of your own before it is too late. What would you do? Oh, did I mention you have the secret ability to heal others just by touching them? This is just one of the many situations 13-year-old Willow Krimble must face in this Web Novel, A Girl Named Willow Krimble.
Willow lives with her mother and older brother, Wyatt; she loves hanging out with her best friend, the feisty and sarcastic Razzel Fiora, and she has a close relationship with her grandmother. Seems pretty normal, right? It might be if the two most popular girls in middle scho
ol, Shayla Stergus and Snella Burenbine, did not taunt and remind her, on a daily basis, that she was born without her left leg.
Forced to maneuver through obstacles most teenagers would not need to tackle, Willow is suddenly blessed (or cursed?) with the unusual power to heal others through touch. Ever selfless, Willow’s desire to help the injured and sick thrusts her into a world where she is given immense responsibility, putting the needs of others before her own, all the while trying to maintain her secret.
Willow’s adolescent journey takes her through an emotional cyclone where she finds joy and purpose in helping an array of patients from an old man with Alzheimer’s to a mauled animal in a pet store. But Willow soon finds out there are limitations to her ability and, no matter how hard she might try, she cannot save everyone.Through the intermingling of joy and pain, Willow is repeatedly tested to discover just how strong she can be, how strong she has been her entire life, and how everyone possesses the ability to effect another person’s world, with or without a secret power.