The Warden's Daughter

Warden's Daughter - Jerry Spinelli

I felt so alone reading this novel. Here was a twelve-year-old girl living in a county prison with her father, the Warden, crying out for help. She was surrounded by individuals yet she was all alone. The one person she wanted, she couldn’t have and the one person she could have, was emotionally not there. I felt she was drifting away, she was trying to throw out lines for others to grab but no one was reaching for them. Then, at the end of the novel, there was some saving graces but why put people through the pain so there is sunshine later.

Her mother died when she was a baby. As Cammie watches, she notices what she is missing not having a mother and now Cammie wants to find another mother. She feels the prison trustee that takes care of her father and her might be the replacement she is looking for but Eloda is not picking up on the clues that Cammie is leaving for her. Cammie becomes annoyed with her best friend when her attention strays to the boys and suddenly Reggie is interested in makeup and being seen. Cammie finds friendship in the women’s gated exercise yard at the prison. I found myself sad that she found acceptance with older women and was having a hard time being noticed at home. There were times when Cammie had friends, she was enjoying herself and the time with them but the time ended and she was alone again. I did enjoy the ending, it was amazing but I thought Cammie felt isolated and confused throughout the novel and when the ending occurred, it didn’t make it all right.