The Great Upending by Beth Kephart
There’s something about Beth Kephart’s writing. Instantly she draws me in, exquisitely capturing the moment with sensory imagery. I'm right there, sitting on a windowsill, gazing at the night sky with eleven-year-old Sara Scholl and her younger brother Hawk.
Hawk kicks his bare feet. I kick mine. The air freckles up with fireflies. The trees wave their hands in the breeze.
This summer Sara is grappling with a physical condition that seriously affects her heart, a mysterious man who has taken up residence on the family farm, and the aftermath of a devastating fire.
Sara stands out among her peers. Literally. Taller than both of her parents, she is extremely thin and her feet are flat. She has a condition known as Marfan syndrome which affects the connective tissues throughout her body. Of critical concern is the possibility of an aortic rupture. A surgical procedure could save her life, but it requires the services of an expensive specialist in faraway Cleveland.
Somehow despite, or maybe because of a life-threatening condition and the possibility of financial ruin, there is a reason to hope.
Hope is rain. Hope is Sara’s seed collection. Hope is a pair of red shoes.
I love this book. Considering current world events, The Great Upending has arrived at precisely the right time.