The Sweetheart of Prosper County by Jill Alexander

Genre:  Realistic Fiction

# of Pages:  212 pages

RAC Book:  Yes

Austin is a fourteen-year-old girl who lives in Texas with her mom.  Her father died six years earlier in an accident on Christmas Eve, which has left her mother a little traumatized and overprotective.  There is a family of bullies who think they can do anything in the town because they have money.  One in particular likes to criticize Austin at every chance he gets.  As Austin deals with the bullying, she decides that she wants to be the sweetheart of prosper county so that she can ride in the parade and no one could ever make fun of her again.  In order to do this she must raise a chicken to enter in the county fair.  It’s a very long process to raise a chicken and get him ready for the county fair, but Austin believes if she does this it will be the first step toward becoming somebody in this town.  Will she ever feel the courage to stand up for herself?

This heartwarming story follows a girl who has many things to deal with including a mother who has withdrawn from her life, and a terrible bully who thinks he can do anything because his father owns the corrupt mayor.  As she grows up and matures, she begins to see that she is the only one who can really change things for herself.  The characters are well-developed and fun to read about and the plot is so interesting and fast paced that anyone will want to know more about county fairs and raising animals.

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