Reviews for Wedding Planner's Daughter
Horn Book Guide Reviews 2005 Fall
Willa's mother is a successful Cape Cod wedding planner who has no use for romance, which makes it very unlikely that Willa's wish for a father will ever come true. While the characters and story aren't always believable, Willa's exploits are amusingly portrayed. Copyright 2005 Horn Book Guide Reviews.
Kirkus Reviews 2005 February #1
Willa Havisham has always wanted a father, but her mother, Stella, seems destined to always be the wedding planner and never the bride. As Cape Cod's most sought-after expert on The Big Day, Stella has devised a 12-point plan for assuring a perfect wedding, but something seems to be missing. Losing Willa's father has made her untouchable, but Willa is determined to break through to her. A touching adventure unfolds as Willa tries to remind her mother of the 13th and most important ingredient, love. A promising love interest, a celebrity wedding and dozens of cherry cordials keep Willa hopeful that her mother might finally find love. This smart and funny fairy tale stays hopeful and enchanting, even as it touches on the more difficult aspects of love. Romantic and real. (Fiction. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus 2005 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.
Publishers Weekly Reviews 2005 February #2
After moving often with her widowed, wedding planner mother Stella Havisham ("as glamorous as a queen"), Paratore's (How Prudence Proovit Proved the Truth About Fairy Tales) feisty young narrator Willa finally feels at home in the Cape Cod town of Bramble. The seventh grader can now spend time with her Nana, who owns a candy store in town; finds a kindred spirit in Mr. Tweed, a bookseller who supplies this voracious reader with books galore; and feels certain that classmate Tina will become her best friend. And she hopes that Bramble will be the place where she will finally find a father, a prospect that becomes brighter when Sam, a handsome widower and poet, moves in next door. Stella has never let herself get too close to any man since Willa's father (in one of the novel's numerous theatrical twists) died in a hot-air balloon crash the day after their wedding, yet the matchmaking girl thinks Sam is the one whose amour may just crack her mother's armor. The author laces her appealing tale with literary allusions (this Ms. Havisham has "great expectations" for her daughter) and with quotes from books Willa reads, and plays up the romance blatantly, with happy endings galore. A sweet little morsel. Ages 8-13. (Feb.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal Reviews 2005 March
Gr 4-6-This book is as sweet a confection as the cherry cordials its 12-year-old protagonist is so fond of eating. Willafred Havisham is starting to put down roots in Bramble, Cape Cod, where her grandmother runs a candy shop and where she's made a friend. She is hoping that her mother will stay here longer than the two years they usually live anywhere, and that she will remarry. Stella is a successful wedding planner who is unaware that her daughter has been adding her own touch for years: she sews cherry pits into the hem of the gowns for good luck. When a celebrity wedding goes awry because of this, Stella feels her business is ruined and the two leave town. The girl's letter to her mother about the meaning of the pits (they represent love) provides emotional heft to what has up to that point been just a pleasant story. Chapters begin with a quote from a book or, less successfully, from a character in this novel. These allusions may prompt readers to look into some of Willa's favorite books and writers.-Tina Zubak, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
VOYA Reviews 2005 April
Willafred always wanted a father. Hers died the day after he married her mother, Stella, the wedding planner. Ever since, Stella has avoided involvement, relocating each time someone gets too close. Continually moving northward from Washington, D. C., they finally return home to Bramble, Cape Cod. That summer on her thirteenth birthday, which falls on Friday, January 13th, Willa's birthday wish is that Stella and Sam, their new next-door neighbor and Willa's English teacher, get married. Sam would make a great dad. Willa enlists the aid of her grandmother in her matchmaking venture, and soon Sam and Stella fall in love. It seems too good to be true, and it is. Willa's wishes come crashing down when Stella plans a high-profile wedding, which ends in catastrophe because of Willa's good-luck addition to the bridal gown. Once again, Stella has their suitcases packed This novel is cute and innocent. The writing is light and breezy, and the content is typical for teenage girl books-concerns about boys, best friends, being flat chested, and parental rules. The happy ending is predictable, as is Willa's one rebellious act that causes Stella to see the light. There is little character development, some action, and many literary quotations. The story is neither sentimental nor teary. An easy read for ten- to twelve-year-olds, it will neither delight nor dismay readers. Middle school and public libraries with money to spare should consider this book.-Ed Goldberg 3Q 3P M Copyright 2005 Voya Reviews.