Review: Beverly, Right Here by Kate DiCamillo

Berverly.png“Just because you can’t stand to think about something doesn’t mean it ain’t happening, that it ain’t true. People wait on other people. People rely on other people.”

Two-time Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo introduced readers to Raymie Nightingale, Louisiana Elefante and Beverly Tapinski in Raymie Nightingale, set in 1975, when the girls were just ten-years-old and competing to win the title of ‘Miss Central Florida Tire 1975.’ The ‘Three Rancheros,’ as Louisiana dubbed them, formed an inseparable bond; one of those pure friendships that you just know will stand the test of time and whatever life throws at it. This was evidenced in Louisiana’s Way Home, when twelve-year-old Louisiana was whisked away from her friends by her grandmother, and inadvertently cast on a journey of self-discovery; but through it all, her friends never strayed far from her mind.

Now we have Beverly, Right Here; the final book in ‘Three Rancheros’ trilogy (I am holding back tears as I write those words), set in August 1979, when fourteen-year-old Beverly Tapinski decides it’s finally time to leave home — not just ‘run away’, because she has done that plenty of times before; but actually abandon the life she knows, permanently — and takes to the road, landing a job at Mr. C’s fish restaurant, and finding a new home at the Seaside Court with Iola Jenkins, and new friends in Elmer from the local convenience store, Zoom City.

This is a story about belonging; about finding a community that opens its doors to you, and having the courage to accept its warmth and reciprocate. Beverly is not as immediately endearing as Raymie and Louisana; but then, she is older, more weary of the world, having relinquished the rose-coloured glasses of childhood. The joy of Beverly, Right Here is witnessing its protagonist’s emotional barriers gradually chip away through the kindness of strangers, who become friends, then family.

ISBN: 9781406391633
Imprint: Walker
Binding: Hardback
Release Date: September 24, 2019
Dimensions: 140 x 197mm, 256pp
Stock Status: Confirmed
Australian RRP: $19.99
New Zealand RRP: $22.99

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