A National Book award Finalist
'With its short, vibrant chapters and clear, gentle prose, this triumphant and necessary book conjures the enchantments of childhood without shying away from the fraught realities of abandonment, abuse and neglect…Twirling a baton requires flair and confidence, in addition to an understanding that the baton is always balanced just a tiny bit off-center. There is something wonderfully off-balance, too, about - DiCamillo’s storytelling. It allows her characters to sparkle and soar. DiCamillo has called this novel, based partly on her own fatherless Florida childhood, 'the absolutely true story of my heart.' What a beautiful and generous heart it is.'
—The New York Times Book Review.