Reviews for Willa by Heart

Booklist Reviews 2008 February #1
Summer isn't going as expected for 14-year-old Willa. Her mom's pregnant; her beloved church minister is moving away; and she doesn't get the part she wanted in a theater production. Set in idyllic Cape Cod with colorful, though sometimes stock characters, this third title in the Wedding Planner's Daughter series explores realistic issues of friendship and family, including Willa's growing appreciation for her stepfather Sam and a sympathetic portrayal of her mother's grief after a miscarriage. Willa's spirited, engaging first person narrative is abundantly sprinkled with literary allusions and quotes from titles collected in an appended booklist. Copyright 2008 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2008 Fall
In her latest adventure, fourteen-year-old Willa is dating the perfect boy, helping her mom plan weddings, auditioning for Our Town, and preparing to become a big sister. A new girl in town throws Willa for a loop, but she remains thoughtful and kind. Willa sounds young for her age; the brief chapters and light tone will attract younger readers. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2007 November #2
Willa is still getting used to the idea of having JFK as her official boyfriend; her mother and stepfather are gearing up for another busy season at the inn; and Nana is working hard to come up with new taffy and fudge flavors to wow the tourists. But when a new girl, Mariel, moves to town, she seems to want everything Willa has, including JFK. The last straw for Willa is when Mariel lands the part opposite JFK in the local performance of Our Town. In addition to having to watch her boyfriend kiss a beautiful girl, there are two weddings, a farewell and a new baby for Willa to handle. Willa remains charming, funny and often achingly real. Complete with another of "Willa's pix," a list of her recommended books, this is sure to please bibliophiles, theater lovers and anyone looking for a good story. (Fiction. 10-12) Copyright Kirkus 2007 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2008 January #2
New sequels arrive for devoted series fans. Willa feels overwhelmed by a new sibling on the way, her new "official" boyfriend and the new girl who seems like she wants to steal him in Willa by Heart, the latest addition to Coleen Murtagh Paratore's Wedding Planner's Daughter series. (S&S, $15.99 228p ages 8-12 ISBN 9781-4169-4076-0; Jan.) Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

School Library Journal Reviews 2008 April

Gr 5-8-- In this third installment in the series, Willa plans to spend the summer reading on the beach, but life isn't so simple. The Bramblebriar Inn, which her family owns, has two weddings to plan. The teen is hoping to land the role of Emily in a local production of Our Town , but fears that a beautiful new girl is trying to steal her boyfriend and her part in the play. And when Willa's mother announces that she is pregnant, the high school student has mixed feelings about becoming a big sister for the first time. Luckily, Willa is as headstrong and enchanting as the heroines in the books she devours. The novel's descriptive narrative will hook readers from the start, and the protagonist's irrepressible wit will keep them going. They will fall in love with Willa's family and friends, who populate the quaint Cape Cod town. The author makes every effort to fill in the gaps for those who haven't read the earlier books, but this volume does not stand alone. However, the characters are so lovable that readers will want to go back to the earlier titles.--Julianna M. Helt, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA

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