Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Shortcomings by Ginger Simpson

This is a story about acceptance. It's about accepting others the way they are, shortcomings and all and about accepting YOURSELF, shortcomings and all.

Cindy's "shortcoming" is one leg being two inches shorter than the other. She's got a limp. The kids at school call her names, won't sit with her at lunch, laugh when other tease her, or just plain avoid her alltogether (which is no better).

Having grown up with a disability myself, I felt as though I was reading my own story, except it's a leg issue, not a hearing issue. I think the author pulled this off nicely and I feel it's a story that should be read by the masses, especially the young ones that this novel is aimed at. This moral cannot be repeated enough: "Our shortcomings don't define who we are, unless we let them." And as Cindy's friend says in the book, "You're never going to find someone who likes you until you like yourself."

And I'm getting off track here... Cindy is 17 and never been kissed. When the star of the football team asks her for tutoring, Cindy thinks, "Oh he just needs to pass math class and stay on the football team.." When he asks her to the school dance, Cindy thinks, "Oh he is playing a joke on me!"

Is bitterness ruining things for Cindy? Is she seeing ulterior motives where there are none? Except for that nasty chick, Sally, does anyone really have a problem with Cindy's handicap? Or is it just Cindy with the problem? Perhaps she is making it into more of a problem than it is.. Again, there's a strong lesson here.

There's more going on in this story, however. There's a bad accident, there's young love, there's jealousy, there's coveting thy neighbor's furniture, and there's first job excitement. There were a few minor irritations. Momma irritated me. As an independant working woman, I found myself frowning at mama.. She is always in the kitchen making dinner, preparing to make dinner, or doing dishes. (Woman, this is 2011! You have rights! Tell the man to eat a Hot Pocket!)

And the brother, that's a future sexist pig right there and I would have loved to see someone set him straight...

 "Why does Cindy get to do everything?" he whined.

"What do I get to do that you don't?" Cindy asked, with hands on her hips. "I'm home a lot more than you are. While you're out playing with your friends, I'm here helping Momma."

 "Well, you're a girl, and you're supposed to."

Say what???? Is that right?? I would go up one side of that kid and down the other. LOL

Nevertheless, this book is aimed at the younger crowd, eleven and up and judging it for the crowd it is intended for, I rate it a five. I highly recommend kids everywhere read it. If they are being mistreated in school, this will give them hope and teach them to not be ashamed of themselves. If they are doing the mistreating in school, well, obviously they need to read it even more.

I bought this on Amazon Kindle.


  1. Tara,
    Thank you for the lovely review. You have no idea how much it means that you selected my book when you have so many other choices.

    When I wrote this book, I drew on my own childhood experiences and I honestly gave no thought to "twentieth century" women. My mother always fixed a big dinner for the family, and even when I worked, it was my job, too. As for the annoying little brother? I had one just like him, except I dressed mine up like a little girl and called him "Clarenda" until he grew old enough to fight me. *lol*

    Little brothers have annoyed girls all over the world, and even today, mine's a big pain in the tush.

    Again, from the bottom of my heart...Thank you so much.

  2. Great review. I read this book also and can't recommend it enough.