Published by Walker & Company, 2011, 247 pages
In OyMG, fourteen-year-old orator Ellie Taylor attends a Christian camp with the goal of winning a scholarship to Benedict’s, a school with an awesome oratory program. There’s just one problem: she’s Jewish, well, half.
That’s the set-up for this debut novel from Amy Fellner Dominy.
The good stuff
- Well-developed plot — This book follows the classic approach: clear goal for the heroine, she sets out to attain it, faces several complications until it looks like all hope is lost…and well, you’ll have to read the book to find out what happens, but trust me, the conclusion satisfies. In fact, I’d call this a five-hanky book.
- Relevance to kids — Ellie questions her faith, when to show it and when not, and questions her ability to speak truthfully and speak up for herself.
- Positive values — The messages are clear and good.
- Characterization — Ellie is a fully developed character and transforms by book’s end as all well-developed characters should. She is helped along with way by fleshed out characters of her parents, her grandfather, her best friend, and her new beau. There are also a few surprises in character backstory along the way, so there’s no dullness here.
The not-so-good stuff
- I don’t know if I’d refer to an anti-Semite as a racist. I’m sure this is up to debate — maybe for Ellie herself!
- While the title is clever bordering on cute, it’s not like Ellie ever says or texts OMG. So, what’s the point?
4.5 out of 5.0