Viola is not happy to be attending boarding school in Indiana. The place is antiquated and she (with her bright yellow patent leather flats) doesn't quite fit in. But Indiana surprises her. She makes friends, finds a niche for her talent, and even acquires a boyfriend.
What I thought: The review I read of Viola in Reel Life was lukewarm, but I decided to give it a try as my aunt liked (i.e., raved about) Trigiani's adult books. So glad I read it. This book was great on so many levels. Viola has a unique voice. Her talent is interesting. The setting (boarding school) has been done before, but like those who came before Trigiani pulled it off. (I'm thinking Jellicoe Road, The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks.) Viola's struggle to acclimate herself to a new life is achingly realistic. I didn't want her story to end. Need I say more?
(New York: Harper Teen, 2009)