Rocky Road by Rose Kent. Knopf, 2010
(review copy from the publisher)
Genre: realistic fiction
Terrific story of a family moving to upstate New York in the middle of winter to start an ice cream parlor. Tess is in seventh grade and her little brother, Noah, is eight years old. He is also deaf. Their dad is out of the picture. Their ma is a dreamer and hard to stop when she gets an idea in her head. She also suffers from what she calls Shooting Stars. Tess learns the condition has another name, bipolar disorder. Their new home is in a senior community which at first seems bizarre but turns out to be a blessing as the community takes the children into their hearts as surrogate grandparents. Ma works nonstop, dreaming up new flavors of ice cream and renovating the space that will become their store. Through her efforts, the downtown business district begins to dust itself off and shine. Tess begins to make friends and things are looking up on the eve of the store's grand opening when the Shooting Stars return and Ma crashes into despair and depression. It is up to Tess and her friends and new family from the senior community to make the business a success.
Full of admiration for Kent's storytelling.
Time reading: 3 hours, 295 pages
Time coughing: less than yesterday
Time spent whining about being sick: everyone is bored with me so I gave it up