Icy Sparks

Icy Sparks

Book - 1999
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Rural Kentucky in the 1950s is not an easy place to grow up in, and it's especially hard for ten-year-old Icy Sparks, an orphan who lives with her grandparents. Life becomes even more difficult for Icy when violent tics and uncontrollable cursing begin - symptoms brought on by a troubling affliction that goes undiagnosed until her adulthood. Icy's adolescence is marred by the humiliation of her illness, and its all-too-visible signs are the source of endless mystery and hilarity as everyone around her offers an opinion about what's troubling the girl. Eventually, Icy finds solace in the company of Miss Emily, an obese woman who knows what it's like to be an outcast in this tightly knit community. Narrated by a now-grown Icy, this novel shimmers with warmth and humour as it recounts a young girl's painful and poignant journey to womanhood - and the many lives she touches and enriches along the way.
Publisher: New York : Penguin, 1999, c1998.
ISBN: 9780670896684
Characteristics: 308 p. ; 20 cm.


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Feb 11, 2014

I took this on vacation and found it was a good choice - a quick read that kept my interest from beginning to end. I don´t think it is award-winning material. The premise - a girl growing up with Turette´s and how she and those around her dealt with it in the early fifties when not much was known. Actually, the condition itself was quite secondary in that there was little expansion on it other than Icy´s own description of her actions. The relationships she had were somewhat unbelievable. Either they really loved her and laid it on with a trowel, or they ridiculed her. I do think it is a good read though if you like that interpersonal treatment and you want something a bit stimulating.

Jul 11, 2012

I liked the topic of the book but found the actual book to be just ok. It had a nice ending, though, and was not at all depressing like some other books in Oprah's book club.

Jul 09, 2011

completed this book on July 8, 2011

ltrout May 31, 2011

What a nice ending this book had! It is about Tourette's Syndrome but so much more. One person CAN make a difference, and then it can be played forward.

I don't usually like Oprah's books, but this one was a pleasant surprise.

May 16, 2010

There are two incarnations of Oprah’s book club: the first phase chick lit series, and the second phase lit lit series. This book is from the first phase. I also assume that this is one of the books that led to the second phase. I do like chick lit: it is fun, fast, and engaging. It’s not that this book wasn’t all of those, but it also just wasn’t that great. The subject (a girl in the South during the 50s suffers from Tourette’s Syndrome before anybody knows what that is) is much stronger than the story. I bought this book at a thrift store but I am going to pass it off to my mom.


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Jul 23, 2015

A girl develops Tourette's and is an outcast in her community

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