Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

Boy Bites Bug

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Today I’m sharing a contemporary book, Boy Bites Bug (Abrams, 2018) by Rebecca Petruck. This is a story about friendship, prejudice, and learning about yourself. Plus there’s bug jokes and wrestling, which makes it fun.

Middle schooler Will Nolan tries to divert everyone’s attention from his best friend’s racial comment to Eloy, the new kid at school. Eating a bug gives Will notoriety and helps him come up with an unusual idea for a school project. But, he’ll need help from Eloy. Darryl’s already mad. Will this ruin their friendship?

Rebecca is also the author of the YA novel, Steering toward Normal. You can read about her here.

Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

Song for a Whale

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Song for a Whale (Delacorte Press, 2019) by Lynne Kelly is an incredible story. I loved it so much.

Iris is a tech genius who restores old electronic equipment such as antique radios. She’s also only twelve. Being the only deaf person at her school is very difficult. When she learns about Blue 55, a whale who can’t speak to other whales because he sings at the wrong frequency, Iris gets an idea. She wants to communicate with Blue 55 to show him he’s not alone. However, there are lots of obstacles in her way–like being 3000 miles away.

My grandparents and father repaired electronic equipment so loved reading about a character interested in the subject. The uniqueness of a deaf person wanting to help someone else hear is so cool, too.

I recommended Lynne’s book Chained here. Read about Lynne on her author site.

Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

The Bridge Home

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

The Bridge Home (Nancy Paulsen Books, 2019) by Padma Venkatraman was marvelous. Such a touching story that made my heart ache for the characters.

11-year-old Viji and her sister Rukka run away from an abusive home to the big city of Chennai. There they find shelter on an abandoned bridge and make a new family with two boys. Still, life is not easy. Viji hates being a ragpicker in the city rubbish heaps, but the children can sell what they find to the waste mart man, which lets them buy food and other necessities. And then . . .

You’ll have to read it to see what happens next.

Go here for bonus material for the book. And here to learn more about Padma.

Posted in So Many Good Books, YA Novels

Dear Martin

DearMartinDear Martin (Crown Books for Young Readers, 2017) by Nic Stone is one of those oft recommended books that didn’t disappoint. It’s compelling, moving, sad, and hopeful.
Justyce McAllister is a senior at Braselton Prep and despite what his friend Manny thinks, he’s not treated equally. He found that out the hard way when helping his former girlfriend who is too drunk to drive and he gets arrested. He’s released, but the experience wakes him up to the reality of what he’s been reading in the news. And that’s just the beginning. Things are going to get worse. Much worse.
This book made me sad and mad on behalf of Justyce and young men like him. I wish everyone would read it.
Amazingly enough, this book is Nic Stone’s debut. Her newest book is Odd One Out. Read more on her website. Follow her on Twitter here.

Posted in So Many Good Books, YA Novels

The Belles

The-BellesThe Belles (Freeform Books, 2018) by Dhonielle Clayton is a thought provoking and hard-to-put-down book.
Camille and five other Belles are sixteen. It’s their turn to show what they can do in the Royal Square. One will be chosen as Favorite by the Queen of Orléans. That girl will be the one taking care of the beauty for the royal family and the court for the next three years. And, of course, Camille wants to be the Favorite. The test is for each girl to take a naturally gray Orléansian and turn him/her beautiful. Who will win? More importantly, can a dreadful cycle be broken?
This story has twists and turns, shocks and scares, and ugly and beautiful.
I’m excited about the sequel called The Everlasting Rose. Read about it and Dhonielle’s other books here.
Read about the author here. Follow her on Twitter here.