I read this book two years ago this fall and fell in love with it. Now, just recently, two of my children read it for their LEMI Georgics Scholar Project Class, for our homeschool group. It is an amazing book! Here’s why:
- the young female protagonist, Birdie Boyer, has tons of pluck and grit
- it shows this young girl standing up to bullies
- the troublesome neighbors show kids how uncool it is to be a squatter or someone with rage issues
- the reader gets a slice of life of early white settlers of the Florida lake country
- it is wonderful to see farm life, to see how people worked hard to make their farm prosper
- it is encouraging to see how farmers deal with drought, heat, and cold spells
- we see the Christian way the characters treated the mean neighbors I mentioned above who don’t honor property rights
- the illustrations are charming
- the conversion of the father of the mean family to Christianity was heartwarming (but perhaps a bit implausible as it happened so fast, but hey, it happened to Saul…)
So go get it, it’s just delightful! My homeschool mama friend listened to it with her kids on Audible as they drove to and from our homeschool group. She said her kids all loved it. My young teens liked it too, even my hard-to-please warrior boy. He normally wouldn’t pick up a pastel book with a girl and strawberries on the cover, but he read it for his homeschool class and enjoyed it.
Have you read Strawberry Girl already and want more of that type of book? You are in luck! The author, Lois Lenski, wrote over a dozen books of that type featuring characters from different regions of the US who lived on farms or ranches, dealing with the natural elements of the area. She actually visited the regions and talked to the local people to get a handle on the language, stories, and culture. I am currently reading aloud one of them, Texas Tomboy, to my children. My goal is to read aloud the whole series to my young scholars to accompany their Georgics studies.
If you sign up here for a free trial of scribd.com, the reading app, you can get access to all these lovely books as ebooks. They compose the two collections called American Journeys: Lois Lenski’s Novels of Childhood, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2.
Vol. 1 involves these titles:
Indian Captive, Judy’s Journey, Flood Friday, Texas Tomboy, Boom Town Boy, Coal Camp Girl, and Mama Hattie’s Girl.
Then Vol. 2 has these ones:
Strawberry Girl, Prairie School, Bayou Suzette, Blue Ridge Billy, Corn-Farm Boy, San Francisco Boy, and To Be a Logger.
These ebooks are in Kindle format on amazon for over $25. Get them as part of your free trial on scribd.com!