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Corbett, Sue.
New York : Puffin, 2002
IL 5-8, RL 5.3
ISBN 0142407291
Click on the book to read Amazon reviews
Bernadette is turning 40 years old tomorrow, and she is having a rotten day. She’s under a deadline at her newspaper, the kids, Patrick, 12, Kevin, 10 and Neil, 5, are about to start school tomorrow and her husband has completely forgotten her birthday.

Because Bernadette is having a bad day, Patrick is having a bad day. She has made him baby sit all morning even though it is the last day of summer and now it looks like he is going to have to baby sit this afternoon instead of playing baseball with his best friends, Duffy and Kyle.

Bernadette’s day reaches a low point when the laptop computer she is writing her story on crashes, and of course, she has forgotten to save it. When her husband announces she is going out of town the next day instead of celebrating Bernadette’s birthday, she announces that she is going to her mother’s to work on her story.

As it turns out, Bernadette’s mother passed away this past year. Bernadette has kept the house…she can’t bear to put away her mother’s stuff. We find out that Bernadette’s mother was Irish and believed in fairies and made her own cure-all concoctions. As Bernadette is going through the pantry, she finds some bottles of these concoctions, and though she doesn’t understand the Irish writing on the label, she takes a swig from one of the bottles. Smart move. As she is sitting in an armchair she wishes she were younger and that her mom was still around.

The next morning, she wakes up and she is 12 years old and her mother is alive. In fact the entire house inside is just as it was when she was 12. Bernadette’s mother is expecting her to go to school, so off she goes…to Patrick’s school.

In this book, there are two mysteries. How can Bernadette get back to her own age and family? How can Patrick, his father and two brothers solve the disappearance of Bernadette find her?  (Melissa Bowman,, Armstrong Middle School)

SUBJECTS:     Runaways -- Fiction.
                        Parent and child -- Fiction.
                        Mystery and detective stories.

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