A child’s imagination can be the strongest defense against the cruel reality of the world she lives in. This ideal is brought to life in The Ever Part of Always — Keely Tucker’s First Adventure by Toby K. Davis. In a shining example of a side of American society that has been ignored for too long, Davis brings to life Keely — part child, part victim, but all hero. Keely’s world is one that is too common in towns across the United States. She faces physical abuse from a bully down the street, verbal and emotional abuse from an alcoholic mother, and psychological abuse from a loving but absent father. To combat the seemingly endless assault from the outside world, Keely uses her imagination to create a world of her own. A world where unicorns are the keepers of dreams, dragons guard the colors of the rainbow, and animal friends take on human traits and help Keely face the ultimate challenge, save the life of the unicorn Crea.
The Ever Part of Always — Keely Tucker’s First Adventure is a bedtime story for the modern day youth. Emotional and heartfelt, the story is ideal for teaching children how to express their thoughts, feelings, and fears in positive and productive ways. Teachers, counselors, and therapists should consider this novel a vital asset to be used to help troubled students and children cope with the pressures of abusive or absent parents. Beautifully illustrated, uplifting and heartbreaking, The Ever Part of Always—Keely Tucker’s First Adventure is a must for the bookshelves of children everywhere.
Reviewer: Phil Bolos, May 2012