Being West is Best: A Ginnie West Adventure by Monique Bucheger (middle grade review)

Fourth in the Ginnie West Adventures, Being West is Best finds some of best friends Ginnie and Tillie’s dreams coming true. But for Tillie, one of those dreams is her worst nightmare.

In a twist on the previous books in this series, the drama and adventure of this story are caused more by the adults than the twelve-year old West twins an their friends. When trouble comes to the West ranch, the usual patience and loving guidance of Ginnie’s father and Great-Uncle are put to the test, and Ginnie sees a whole new side of her “lame” dad.

The consequences are more adult as well, and the storylines that deal with alcoholism and domestic abuse may be upsetting to some younger readers. The author does not shy away from the more difficult aspects of life for Ginnie and her friends, but it is, as always, the wonderful family dynamics and the consequences for wrong actions that come to the forefront and make this book and this series well worth the read.

This review is based on a digital copy I voluntarily received from the author. A positive review was not required and it contains only my own, honest opinions.

Simply West of Heaven by Monique Bucheger
Series: Ginnie West Adventures #4
Genre: Middle-Grade Contemporary Fiction
Release Date: 2014

Twelve-year-old BFFs, Ginnie West and Tillie Taylor, are matchmaking geniuses. Together, they maneuvered Ginnie’s widower-dad into proposing to Tillie’s divorcee-mom. Sweet! Certain they are well on their way to sisterhood, each girl is floored when Tillie’s lousy-excuse-for-a-father puts in an appearance after a six year absence. Too bad “lousy dad repellant” doesn’t come in a can. Even though Tillie’s dad has sobered up and is determined to make amends, Tillie would rather he just disappear again. If he stays, “Operation: Secret Sisters” may need to be renamed “Operation: Not Gonna Happen.” If that’s not bad enough, the biggest bully in seventh grade comes over often and wishes he could call the West’s farmhouse “home.” When the bully’s abusive dad shows up as well, Ginnie thinks it’s time to change her family’s motto from “When you’re here, you’re family” to “There’s no more room at the West’s.”

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