A story of dreams, family and letting go... The Wish and the Peacock by Wendy S. Swore (Review)

The cover for this book is so colorful, which I love, and the
story will touch your heart. Read my full review below...

The Wish and the Peacock
By Wendy S. Swore
Middle Grade Contemporary
Hardcover, Audiobook & ebook, 304 Pages
February 4th 2020 by Shadow Mountain


Paige’s favorite family tradition on the farm is the annual bonfire where everyone tosses in a stone and makes a wish. This time, Paige’s specific wish is one she’s not sure can come true: Don’t let Mom and Grandpa sell the farm.

When Paige’s younger brother finds a wounded peacock in the barn, Paige is sure it’s a sign that if she can keep the bird safe, she’ll keep the farm safe too. Peacocks, after all, are known to be fierce protectors of territory and family.

With determination and hard work, Paige tries to prove she can save the farm on her own, but when a real estate agent stakes a “For Sale” sign at the end of the driveway and threatens everything Paige loves, she calls on her younger brother and her best friends, Mateo and Kimana, to help battle this new menace. They may not have street smarts, but they have plenty of farm smarts, and some city lady who’s scared of spiders should be easy enough to drive away.

But even as the peacock gets healthier, the strain of holding all the pieces of Paige’s world together gets harder. Faced with a choice between home and family, she risks everything to make her wish come true, including the one thing that scares her the most: letting the farm go.

Advance Praise/Endorsements:

The Wish and the Peacock is a thoughtful novel about love, loss, and the hope of a new beginning.” -Foreword Reviews

“Heartfelt and funny, the story captures the lives of often underrepresented farming families. An impressive tale carrying universal themes of grief, change, and letting go.” -Kirkus

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My Review

THE WISH AND THE PEACOCK is a story of loss, holding tight to family, dreams, and finding that sometimes you have to let go of those dreams to find new ones. It's a sweet story from the perspective of a 12-year-old girl who is trying to hold on to so much after the loss of her father. The characters are all likable and the small-town, country setting is quite charming.

This is a story that kind of meanders along. It's sweet and charming and easy to relate to. I liked all the things about the farm, the town, the family members, and Paige's friends. I also liked how the peacock played into the story all the way to the end. I especially loved the relationship between Paige and her brother, Scotty. Scotty was adorable with all his facts and knowledge about things that he would just rattle off. I also thought it entertaining to see how everyone interacted and the skill sets these kids have because of living in a farming area, which was very different than the skills children in the city would learn.

My one criticism would be that the main character felt a bit young to me for the age she's supposed to be. I have a 11-year-old who is almost 12 and this felt more like from the perspective of a 10-year-old in many places.

In the end, was it what I wished for? An overall enjoyable read. Don't expect a page-turner, as it's a steadily-paced story. The likable characters and the story of loss and new dreams makes for a read that tugs on the heart.

Content: Clean
Source: I received a complimentary copy from the publisher, which did not require a positive review. All opinions are my own.

About the Author

Wendy S. Swore and her family are farmers. She writes part-time, particularly in winter when her farming chores give her time to plant seeds in her imagination. She is a member of SCBWI. She was named the Idaho Farm Bureau District 1 Woman of the Year in 2018.

Have you read this author's previous book? What do you think about this one?

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