The book Semiprecious by D. Anne Love takes place in Texas in the early 1960’s and is about a twelve year old girl named Garnet Hubbard who is dropped off with her aunt, along with her older sister, Opal, while her mom pursues her dream of becoming a singer in Nashville. Even though her mom promises to come back for them as soon as she can, the girls come to realize they’ve been abandoned in their aunt’s small town in Oklahoma. In their new school, beautiful Opal falls into the popular group right away, but Garnet struggles to fit in. When Garnet finds her aunt is very poor and can barely afford to feed them, Garnet decides it’s up to her to knock some sense into her mother and bring her home. This book is a story about a girl who faces the challenges of near poverty, social acceptance, and self-identity, all while trying to patch her family together.
D. Anne Love does an excellent job writing this story. The language she uses is very easily understood and is an accurate representation of how people talked in the south in the 1960’s. It contains some bits of information that pertain to the politics and problems going on in this time period, such as racism, communism, and putting men on the moon. These topics aren’t the main focus of the novel, but enrich the reader’s experience as they go through the storyline. People aged 10-14, particularly middle schoolers, will especially love and relate to this novel, but anyone is capable of enjoying this work of literature. Garnet is a funny, relatable character that readers will have fun getting to know, and the book causes the reader to question how they would react in Garnet’s place. Overall, this book is absolutely worth having in the library collection because not only will readers be absorbed in the plot of the story, but they will find the characters pleasantly relatable and will be thinking about the book even when they have finished. Lilia L.; Teen Reviewer