Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books, YA Novels

Orbiting Jupiter

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Need a good middle grade read? Easy. Read a book by Gary D. Schmidt (two-time Newbery Honor winner). Orbiting Jupiter (Clarion Books, 2015) was no exception. It’s labeled young adult, but the main character is in sixth grade. I think if it was published now, it probably would be labeled middle grade, although there are definitely tough topics.

Sixth-grader Jack and his family are taking in an eight-grader. They’ve been warned, Joseph tried to kill his teacher, and he has a 3-month old daughter he’s never met. But when Joseph comes, Rosie, the cow loves him. According to Jack, “You can tell all you need to know about someone from the way cows are around him.” Does that mean having Joseph in their lives is easy? No. But you’ll have to read it to see what happens.

This is such a heartfelt heart-breaking book–a mixtures of sadness and joy.

Read about Gary and his books here.

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14 thoughts on “Orbiting Jupiter

  1. I believe I’ve seen this book before, and it sounds incredibly impactful. I’ve only read Schmidt’s book The Wednesday Wars (and a long time ago at that), but I don’t doubt for a second that he of all authors would have the skill to tackle a story like this. Thanks so much for the thoughtful review, Susan!

  2. I haven’t heard of this author but it sounds like I should check him out. The topics are pretty heavy, I’d have thought young adult, but it depends how it is done, I suppose. I am curious with how Joseph’s back story is dealt with, after all, it must be pretty troubled. Thanks for the recommendation!

    1. Wow! You’ve missed out on his other books. THE WEDNESDAY WARS is pretty famous. He’s a Newbery award author too.

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