Icy Sparks Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Icy Sparks

Icy Sparks is a young girl living in midwestern America with her grandparents in the 1950s/1960s. She doesn't get along well with her peers and suddenly starts having tics and croaks. Icy goes down into the root cellar to hide these urges from her grandparents and finally tells her friend, Miss Emily Tanner, a local store owner who is also an outcast from society at 300 pounds. Her teachers try putting her in a solitary classroom but even that doesn't work and her grandparents have Icy admitted to a mental institution for observation.
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Even in the institution, Icy is an outcast. She sees herself as not as mentally ill as her peers there and is being tormented by one of the hospital workers. She befriends a second worker but really just wants to go home. She is allowed to go home after a while but stays mainly in the house or on the surrounding property, but not in public. After her return home, the atmosphere is tense even there and after her grandfather dies, Icy and her grandmother turn to religion for solace.
The review of this Book prepared by Ariana

Icy is a young, orphaned girl growing up in the rural mountains of Kentucky. Throughout the book, she lives in her grandparents' house with a puzzling disease understood by no one. Icy suffers from an evil teacher, a brief period in an insane asylum and a failed love. However, she is helped by her ever-loving grandparents, a morbidly obese woman, a kind principal and an aide at the hospital. The author uses a startling realistic approach when writing from Icy's lonely point of view, for she suffered from epilepsy as a child. In “Icy Sparks”, Gwyn Hyman Rubio uses plot and style to convey the theme that overcoming hardships can lead to accepting yourself.

The review of this Book prepared by Catherine Dickson

This story is all about a young orphaned girl, namely Icy Sparks who is being raised by her grandparents. Life becomes even more difficult for Icy when violent tics and her uncontrollable cursing begins-symptoms brought on by a troubling affliction that goes undiagnosed until adulthood. Icy's childhood and adolescence is marred by the humiliation of her illness, and as a result, others don't understand her. Everyone around her, especially her teachers, offer an opinion about what's troubling the girl. Eventually though, 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 where Icy cannot fit in. Miss Emily helps Icy take some new directions in her life along the hard road ahead.

Eventually as Icy becomes older, she comes to help others with afflictions like hers which is Tourette's syndrome, an often very complex neurological disorder that many people don't understand even today.

The review of this Book prepared by Boppy

Chapter Analysis of Icy Sparks

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   thoughtful Time/era of story    -   1930's-1950's Kids growing up/acting up?    -   Yes Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Age group of kid(s) in story:    -   grade school Something wrong upstairs/downstairs?    -   mental illness

Main Character

Gender    -   Female Profession/status:    -   student Age:    -   a kid Ethnicity/Nationality    -   White (American)


How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   4 () United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Northeast Small town?    -   Yes Small town people:    -   hostile, like Gomer Pyle on steroids

Writing Style

Lot of foul language?    -   Yes

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Gwyn Hyman Rubio Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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