Posted in Award Winners, MG Novels, So Many Good Books

Smack Dab in the Middle of Maybe

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Smack Dab in the Middle of Maybe (‎Random House Books for Young Readers, 2018) by Jo Watson Hackl is very compelling. I missed this book when it first came out but am so glad to have read it now. Such voice! So fun to follow the clues along with the character. And who doesn’t love a secret room!

Her mama has run off and Cricket thinks finding the secret room that an artist painted will help bring Mama back. But Cricket too has to run away to search…to a ghost town. This girl’s only companion in the wilds is a live cricket. And Cricket has a deadline to solve the mystery that everyone else says isn’t real.

The book has won the following awards: 2020 Mississippi Library Association Children’s Author Award, 2019 Southern Book Award Winner–Children’s Category, and was a 2020-2021 Young Hoosier Book Award Nominee.

Read about Jo here. And if you like, check out the book trailer here.

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18 thoughts on “Smack Dab in the Middle of Maybe

  1. I’m very intrigued by this book, especially after watching the trailer! I must check it out further! Thanks for the recommendation! 🙂

  2. I can’t read all the books you recommend, but I am blown away by some of the imaginative and evocative titles. I don’t have the gift for titles, so this stands out to me. Smack Dab in the Middle of Maybe is a brilliant tilter.

  3. Your kind comments make my heart sing! Many thanks! I hope that you all enjoy reading it every bit as much as I enjoyed writing it. You can find free educator and other reader activities and grant opportunities at

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