351U: Please help me find the actual title of a book I thought was named “Honey” (Solved!)

I am an author/illustrator of books for children, and am so pleased to have been directed to your bookstore in my search for a favorite old book. Loganberry looks like such a cool shop! I’d love to come do an event some day, post-Covid. I am currently locked down in Malaysia where my husband is working at an international school.

When I was a tween I read and re-read a book that I’d really like to find. Probably published in the late 1970’s, it was a Scholastic Book Club paperback. When I first started looking for the book I was convinced that the title was Honey, but after searching for months I’m wondering if my memory is playing tricks on me. Wouldn’t be the first time. 😊

The cover featured a close-up portrait of a blonde girl (whose name was Honey?), wavy hair pulled back. She was smiling, looking up and off to the left.

The story is told from the girl’s point of view. I remember her explaining the pitfalls of her unruly hair, which may be why I felt so connected to her. Ha. Maybe she played tennis? I don’t remember that as well, but… maybe.
Mostly I remember that she met an African-American woman called Van, short for Vanilla, who helped her with her hair and with her problems. Apparently the girl was missing her mother, because Van explained to her that every child has a “mama pie” comprised of many mother figures.

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