Every once in a while, we stumble upon a great book. DD found this on a trip to the library with her aunt. It was read several times that first night, and at least once a day until it was finally returned (late) to the library. Someone had a meltdown when it was time to take it back!
Sally Jean begins her bicycle love at the tender age of one. As she gets older, her skills improve and her love deepens. She even names her bike because they are such good friends. One day, Sally Jean realizes she is too big for her beloved bike and the real drama begins.
As a parent, what I love about this book are the subtle messages in the story. Sally Jean's first real bike is purchased at a yard sale. When she outgrows her bike, her parents say sorry but you'll have to wait until next year for a new one because they can't afford to buy her another. Sally Jean doesn't pout or throw tantrums, nor does a fairy godmother bequeath a new bike to this deserving young lady. She figures out a way to earn money to buy a bike! When she realizes she hasn't earned enough, she comes up with plan B to get what her heart desires.
I took this book to school to read to my students. They also loved the story and begged for me to read it again. This has never happened before! I feel that Sally Jean's "can do" attitude really speaks to children. She gets an idea, it fails, so she tries something else. The adults in her life support her work, but do not interfere or take over. Sally Jean is the one to solve her problem.
I happen to know that a copy of Sally Jean will be coming to Turtle soon, so I'm looking at many more rereadings of this story. But I don't mind at all because I love it too!