Rereading: JULIA AND THE HAND OF GOD by Eleanor Cameron

I first became a fan of Cameron’s books with her Mushroom Planet series. This later series is more mature and beautifully written, as well as somewhat autobiographical. It follows the childhood of Julia Redfern and her family in Berkeley, California. Here she’s eleven, and the year is about 1920.

Julia’s imagination is always working overtime, and on this year’s birthday trip to San Francisco, she imagines what it would be like if another major earthquake struck, just as they arrived. Her Uncle Hugh and Aunt Alex lived through the 1906 quake, and met at that time, so she loves to hear stories about it and picture herself in the chaos.

Julia’s family, she, her mother, and brother Greg, are now living in Gramma’s small house while they try to save enough to rent their own place. It’s difficult, especially because Gramma dotes on Greg, but is always critical of Julia and her wild ideas. Julia does have some, like bringing a dead mouse to the home of her friend Maisie so they can bury it, but Julia wants to cremate it. Maisie’s mother’s best roasting pan will never be the same, and to pay for the damage, Julia takes a job with an elderly art collector, Mr. Jacklin, weeding his large garden. Julia and Mr. Jacklin become good friends, and when a wildfire threatens to destroy his home, Julia does her best to help, even though it’s very dangerous.

Recommended, third in the series chronologically.

Julia and the Hand of God by Eleanor Cameron

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.