Beech Tree Books

October 1993

$7.95 US

48p pb

ISBN: 978-0688126544

fp March 1990

Soda Jerk

Cynthia Rylant

paintings by Peter Catalanotto

from the book...

From opening to closing, he works at Maywell's Drugstore, making sundaes and shakes, pouring coffee - and watching. From behind the soda fountain counter the whole of Cheston, Virginia, is up for inspection: the rich kids and jocks, hippies and deputy sheriffs, parents and children.


And since he's a good watcher, a good listener, the soda jerk's observations about people, fads, love, the future, make great listening themselves.


Here are twenty-eight of them, looking like poems, sounding like life, accompanied by six dappled paintings that capture the glow of a small town where the "tips are okay. But the secrets are better."

If you have read this verse novel and would like to share your opinion of it with other readers please send your review or comments to YARR-A

I read the book Soda Jerk and it’s about a teenager who works in a general store and the people he serves. He tells us about their characters and his opinions and experiences with them. Each poem is about a different person and all the stories and rumours they tell in the little drugstore.

It is also about the town, Cheston, where the drugstore is situated. The soda jerk tells so many great stories and helps gives you an insight of what it might be like to live in a small town and how it's not as picturesque as it may seem.

I could easily put myself in the story and imagine everyone eating their ice-creams in the tiny shop. The paintings by Peter Catalanotto also add interest to the story because they show you the atmosphere. They also help you picture the characters in your mind.

I recommend this book to people who like simple stories because it isn't too heavy. It’s such a beautiful story and really touching. Definitely an enjoyable book!

Sarah, Year 10, Canberra, Australia

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