The Secret Hum of a Daisy by Tracy Holczer
Grace has been through a lot for a 12-year-old. Her mother and her wander around the state of California all her life, never staying in a town very long. Grace wants to change that when she finally feels at home with Mrs. Greene and her daughter, Lacey. Her mom and her argue about moving again and unfortunately her mom has an accident that takes her life and Grace is the one who finds her. Grace is sent to live with her grandmother, a woman she has never met because she sent Grace's mom away when she was pregnant at age 17. At first, Grace tries to sabotage her placement with her grandmother so that she can return to live with Lacey and Mrs. Greene. She moves into the shed instead of living in her grandmother's house, doesn't eat, and pulls mean pranks on her grandmother. Grace even tries to run away once. On her first day of school, she finds a paper crane in the bushes. Grace's mother loved cranes and made a living of creating birds as art. She begins to find more paper cranes throughout the town and she thinks her mom is trying to giver her a treasure hunt, something she did when she was alive. Grace begins to learn more about her grandparents, mother and father from various members of the community as she searches for more clues. Slowly she begins to settle into the community and finds out who is really leaving the paper cranes. Grace also finds peace with her grandmother and accepts the love she has to offer. This book takes it's time telling Grace's story, but it is worth the time. The reader can feel Grace's anger towards losing her mother and having to live with a grandmother she doesn't know. The characters in the book are very well-developed. Immediately I fell in love with Max, which was justified after I learned more about him. Even grandma makes you curious about who she really is as a person. The town is filled with quirky people but it's the kind of small town you would want to settle down in to live.