The book Green Angel by Alice Hoffman is one of the greatest books I have ever read, because I grew up with it, it has a wonderful plot, and I think the way I interpreted it is unique.
I first got this book in fourth grade for my the reading program RIF through my school. When I first saw it, the cover intrigued me, so I selected it for one of my two new books that month. I immediately started reading it while waiting for the other kids in my class to pick their books, and fell in love with the character the main character. I think I read the entire book in about two days. I loved it so much that I continued reading it throughout my middle school career, and even a couple times in my high school career. Every time, I notice something else about the book, be it symbolism or character development, I recognize something new each time I read it, so I continue reading it though my reading level has far surpassed the book.
The plot contains one main character, and introduces her as Green. She is the outcast of her family, and has to stay behind to tend to the garden while her family sells their crops in the town. One day, there is a huge fire, and the entire town is engulfed in the flames. The smoke and ashes reach so far as the hill atop which Green lives, and blinds her. Her family is killed in the fire. She becomes dependent on her sense of touch and survives in a state of depression without her family. She meets a dog, who she names Ghost because of its white color and thin, garish figure. She also eventually meets a boy, I believe, and helps to heal him as well as herself.
The message I first got from the book was that even though she had no one, she still had her plants, which is probably why I love leaves and trees and gardens so much to this day. However, over the years I have come to take a different message from the book. Like a phoenix, through the ashes of disaster arises a better person. Green had to learn to adjust and move on from the tragedy that afflicted her. She became more observant and changed forever. Though she went through such a powerful struggle, she overcame it.
This book has changed my life and influenced me more than any book has ever out of all the books I have read. It means so much to me, and I honestly can't imagine my life without it.