Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

A Good Kind of Trouble

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

When I started reading A Good Kind of Trouble (Balzer + Bray, 2019) by Lisa Moore Ramée, I thought, here we go again with another friends-changing-when-they-enter-Junior-High story. But it’s so much more than that. It’s about your own identity and how you don’t have to fit in a box. It’s about getting rid of assumptions. And standing up for what you believe in. And, yes, changing friendships.

Twelve-year-old Shayla wants to avoid trouble, but she discovers that sometimes you have to be trouble. Whether it’s in a relationship with friends or standing up to others, Shayla learns how to do the right thing.

I love the first line: “I’m allergic to trouble.” There’s strong seventh grade voice and humor in this story. This book is a Walter Dean Meyers Honor book, and can also help explain why Black Lives Matter.

Lisa is also the author of Something to Say (2020) and has a middle grade fantasy called Mapmaker coming in 2022. Read more about her here.

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11 thoughts on “A Good Kind of Trouble

  1. There is so much to like about this story. Middle grade readers should find this plot engaging and realistic. Thanks for featuring on MMGM. I’ll be adding this to my TBR list.

  2. ” It’s about your own identity and how you don’t have to fit in a box. ”
    OMG, sounds a lot like my WIP 😉
    But, when I think of it, this is one of the classic MG themes.

  3. I really enjoy stories that encourage teens to be themselves and that they don’t have to fit into a box. The opening line really makes you want to read on. Great post. Thanks for shairng!

  4. I’ve heard great things about this book, and it sounds like it really stands out and tackles some compelling themes! I honestly thought it was older than 2019, I think because the cover font is weirdly dated—I’m not sure why Balzer + Bray didn’t pick something a little newer-looking. Thanks so much for the wonderful review, Susan!

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