Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

The Elephant in the Room

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

The Elephant in the Room (Rocky Pond Books, 2021) by Holly Goldberg Sloan is much more than an immigrant story or a story about autism or even a story about winning the lottery. Plus a real elephant. Told in multiple points of view, this story is a compelling read.

Sila was born in Oregon but her parents are Turkish citizens and something was wrong with her mother’s paperwork so after 15 years in America, her mother has to go back to Turkey. And it’s Sila’s fault. Living without her mother for the last eight months is the hardest thing Sila has ever known. Then she and her dad meet Gio, who won the lottery. And the three of them meet Veda, a circus elephant, whom Gio buys because of Sila. When Sila is assigned to be a partner to Mateo, she surprises herself by inviting him to meet Veda. Who knew this series of events would give hope to everyone involved.

Read about Holly here and check out her other books here.

Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

Finally Seen

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday

Finally Seen (Simon and Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2023) by Kelly Yang is so so goood!! It’s hard to tell you how much I like it. 😉

Ten-year-old Lina Gao has been living in China with her grandmother, Lao Lao, and finally gets to go live in America with her parents and younger sister who left five years ago. But all is not well in Los Angeles. Things are definitely not what she expected. Like her English being good enough. And her sister in all the family pictures, but none of her. Have her parents even missed her? Plus, Lina feels guilty about leaving Lao Lao behind.

This character and her situation felt so real. I loved seeing how Lina grew and changed and how she changed things around her.

Kelly Yang is an award winning and bestselling author. On her Finally Seen page, she asks kids what books make them feel seen. Check out her books here and scroll to the bottom to read the FAQs.

(Previously I recommended her book Front Desk here.)

Posted in MG Novels, So Many Good Books

Front Desk

Front DeskFront Desk (Arthur A. Levine Books, 2018) by Kelly Yang is a book I wish everyone could read. (Especially those who take what they have for granted…)

Mia Tang’s parents told her that America was this amazing place. But so far, no house, no dog, and very little money.

Ten-year-old Mia doesn’t want the kids at school to know where she lives–a motel, but better than when they lived in their car. She does like working the front desk. And making new friends. Although she wishes she could speak native English. And write it, too.

But Mr. Yao, the motel owner, is making it harder and harder on her parents. Will they all have to move and find jobs yet again?

Front Desk was named a “Best Book” many times over. See them all here.

Read the real story behind this wonderful story.

Besides being a children’s author, Kelly is a journalist and educator. Read more here.