Saturday, January 17, 2009

Savvy by Ingrid Law

The Beaumonts are not like other families. Each member of the Beaumont family has a Savvy, or a special ability, which appears on a child's thirteenth birthday. Rocket Beaumont can produce electricity. Fish Beaumont can control water. Momma Beaumont does everything perfectly. As Mississippi Beaumont, called Mibs, approaches her thirteenth birthday, an accident changes the Beaumont family, possibly forever. Now, Mibs has a new purpose. She has to find out what her Savvy is, and she has to figure out how she can use it to save her Poppa.

I'm a fan of comic books and superhero stories, but I tend to get bored when the same superpowers are used again and again. This is not the case with Savvy. The special abilities Law gives her characters are abilities I've not seen before, like the ability to catch radio waves in a jar, or to hear tattoos talking about their wearers. Also different is how the special abilities are portrayed. It can take years to master a Savvy, and in the meantime, they seem to be more trouble than they're worth. When Rocket's feeling particularly emotional, he accidentally blacks out the power for miles around; Fish has been known to cause accidental hurricanes; even Momma, whose Savvy is perfection, can mess things up perfectly.

The charm of this story lies in the folksy language used by Mibs as the narrator. The book really feels like an old-fashioned folk tale, and it's almost like being removed from our own time to visit another place. Mibs is an easy character to love, as are her brothers and her friends. It's easy to care about their predicament, and the ending is a satisfying one. All around, a great book.

No comments:

Post a Comment