Frequent readers know that I spend my summer reading books for my age group and deciding how they will fit in my classroom.
When I first read the premise for this book, I expected another dystopian book that is such a popular genre right now. I have to confess that I wasn't looking forward to reading something so dark, but I commited to reading the first 50 pages anyway. What I read was so uplifting, I want to read it aloud to my fourth graders this year.
Gas pumps run dry while Dewey Mariss is in charge of the family bicycle repair business. He and his four siblings have to manage the business and take care of each other, because his parents are stranded without fuel on what was supposed to be a short trip.
Bicycles are now an important part of daily life and the Mariss family business explodes. Although there are people in this story that take advantage of the situation, the theme of this book is the kindness and helpfulness of most people.
I was reminded of this Mr. Roger's quote, "When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.'" This book embodies this quote.