[In Tunes for a Small Harmonica, a] sixteen-year-old tomboy, J. F., struggles to define who she is against a backdrop of adults who mostly succeed in giving her remarkably little help and encouragement.
Readers who wonder what became of intrepid heroines of juvenile fiction like Pippi Longstocking, Harriet the Spy and Queenie Peavy might find their reincarnations in J. F., five years older, a lot wealthier, and perhaps a little wiser. (p. 89)
Margaret Parish "Of Love and Sex and Death and Becoming and Other Journeys," in English Journal, Vol. 67, No. 5, May, 1978, pp. 88-90.∗