I am in love with Jerry Spinelli’s latest work, The Warden’s Daughter. He got me right from the start with all the writing about the smell of the scrapple cooking in the greater Philly area prison kitchen.
I loved scrapple as a kid. I don’t care that it was made from leftover pig parts (I didn’t know it was pig snouts until Mr. Spinelli enlightened me, and I’ll admit that gave me pause…) but oh, what I wouldn’t do for a piece of that delectable breakfast staple, not exactly famous or available in these here parts (Mississippi).
I wanted the heroine in my WIP to love scrapple- but thought, “who’ll even have the slightest idea what I’m writing about?” Thanks to the great Spinelli – EVERYONE!
Just in case I’ve piqued your interest. Straight from the publisher:
The Warden’s Daughter
From Newbery Medalist Jerry Spinelli (Maniac Magee, Stargirl) comes the “moving and memorable” (Kirkus Reviews, starred) story of a girl searching for happiness inside the walls of a prison.
Cammie O’Reilly lives at the Hancock County Prison–not as a prisoner, she’s the warden’s daughter. She spends the mornings hanging out with shoplifters and reformed arsonists in the women’s excercise yard, which gives Cammie a certain cache with her school friends.
But even though Cammie’s free to leave the prison, she’s still stuck. And sad, and really mad. Her mother died saving her from harm when she was just a baby. You wouldn’t think you could miss something you never had, but on the eve of her thirteenth birthday, the thing Cammie most wants is a mom. A prison might not be the best place to search for a mother, but Cammie is determined and she’s willing to work with what she’s got.
“Jerry Spinelli again proves why he’s the king of storytellers” (Shelf Awarenss, starred) in this tale of a girl who learns that heroes can come in surprising disguises, and that even if we don’t always get what we want, sometimes we really do get what we need.