Shoeshine Girl

shoeshine girl bulla

Who ever heard of a shoeshine girl?

The last thing Sarah Ida wants to do is spend the summer with her Aunt Claudia. But when her parents send her away because of problems at home, that is exactly what she has to do. With no allowance and no fun to be had, Sarah Ida decides to look for a job. But who will hire a ten year old? Al, the shoeshine man, will!

Sarah loves her job, even if it means getting knee-deep in shoe polish everyday. Then something terrible happens and it looks like the shoeshine stand will have to close forever. If Sarah Ida wants to keep it open, she'll have to learn a few lessons about growing up along the way ...---from the publisher

96 pages                      978-0064402286                     Ages 7-10

Keywords:  pain, jobs and careers, summer, aunts, chapter book, pain, family life, overcoming obstacles, 7 year old, 8 year old, 9 year old, 10 year old, parents, feelings, emotions, abandonment, community, connection


"Shoeshine Girl addresses a number of emotional issues, most from the perspective of Sarah Ida. She feels unwanted and even abandoned by her parents, and oppressed by what she sees as the unreasonable behavioral demands of her Aunt Claudia. Regardless of what Sarah Ida might say, she wants to be close to people, but in a new town that is really only a temporary stop, she knows that there might not be much point in putting down roots. She wants to go home, but she's not enthusiastic about the idea of rejoining her parents; so, what's a girl to do who feels that she has already been deemed by the world to be unfit after only ten years of life? Where can she turn to when even her parents have hurt her?

Given much freedom to do what she wishes, Sarah Ida finds herself an unlikely job as a shoeshine girl at a little stand in town. It's not a glamorous position and requires hard physical labor, but it offers Sarah Ida paid wages. However, most important, it is through her employment at the stand and her uncertain, slowly growing relationship with the owner, Mr. Winkler, that Sarah Ida first begins to glimpse the first burgeoning rays of what could be nothing but a light in the darkness, illuminating the tunnel from the other side. What follows is truly something of a mini miracle, changing the hearts of more than one person."--from Josiah on Goodreads

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