For the first three quarters of this book, I loved it. You are riding Rose McKenna’s emotional rollercoaster but any mother would. How many times have you volunteered at your child’s school?
Rose’s daughter Melly was born with a port-wine birthmark on her cheek and has been teased and bullied out of her last school and now the harassments has begun all over again at the new Reesburgh Elementary. To see for herself how bad it is between her daughter and the class princess Amanda, Rose decides to be the Lunch Mom for the day. To seeing for herself what is going on and once witnessing it, she takes a few moments to discuss the situation with Amanda and her friends. It is at that exact moment that there is a gas explosion in the kitchen. After regaining consciousness, Rose leads the three girls to the cafeteria exit and returns to the restroom to find her own daughter. Unfortunately, that is not how others see it when one of the girls is seriously injured and Rose is accused of abandoning the little terrors in an effort to save her own child.
Did you know that you could be held civilly and criminally responsible for any child in your care when you are volunteering at a school? I had no idea either and I will tell you that this book will make many rethink the whole classroom helper thing.
As I said, about three quarters of the way through Rose’s character completely changes. She is no longer the mild mannered mom; she morphs into a cape-wearing superhero that is not consistent with the character that we have come to know. I understand wanting to get to the bottom of a situation, but she takes it a little too far. Unless you are Erin Brockovich – and that is even pushing it.
The ending was a complete let down. There were many times that this book could have ended but Ms Scottoline just kept adding one more chapter, and one more chapter and one more chapter. Plus, Amanda had some lingering injuries, but she did not have amnesia, the happily ever after ending was not plausible.
I don’t want to say that I am completely dissatisfied since I enjoyed the beginning immensely and I am glad that this is the new direction that Ms Scottoline is taking since she puts so much caring and compassion in her characters, I just wish that the ending didn’t seem to have come out of left field.
Of course, I will continue reading her books, both the fiction and non-fiction, but I will be more aware of the divergent path that her fiction can suddenly take.