Reviewed by Sally Kruger aka "Readingjunky" for TeensReadToo.com
JoEllen leads a double life. It's a bit like the old fable about the country mouse and the city mouse. Since her parents divorced long ago, JoEllen has divided her time between her father, who lives in the country, and 42 miles away in the city, where her mother lives.
It isn't just the living arrangements that divide JoEllen's life. She explains that even back when her parents named her they couldn't agree. Her name became part Joseph and part Eleanor - a piece of her father and a part of her mother. The city half of her life consists of girl friends, shopping, and movies while the country half involves horseback riding, fishing, and listening to bluegrass music. Even her friends get confused and can't understand how JoEllen copes.
It's the only life JoEllen has ever really known, but now that she's almost thirteen, she is wondering which life is truly hers. Maybe she isn't either one but perhaps someone completely different.
This short novel written in verse tells of a young girl's struggle to find herself. Surrounded by two loving parents, albeit 42 miles apart, she realizes that neither life truly reflects the person she is inside. Any reader searching for their personal identity will be able to relate to this touching tale.