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Contemporary Realistic Fiction

This category contains 154 posts

MERCI SUAREZ CHANGES GEARS by Meg Medina…2019 Newbery Medal

Merci Suarez Changes Gears has been on my To Be Read list for awhile and I’m glad I finally had a chance to read it.  Merci Suarez is in 6th grade.  She lives in Florida with her older brother, Roli, and her parents next door to her Tia Ines (and her twin boys) and her … Continue reading

THE NEXT GREAT PAULIE FINK by Ali Benjamin

The Next Great Paulie Fink is a confusing story.  Our main character is Caitlyn, who, having moved with her mother from upstate New York to Mitchell, Vermont, is starting 7th Grade at a small rural school. The school is located in an old mansion–instead of a typical school building.  All grades are housed in the … Continue reading

TO NIGHT OWL FROM DOGFISH by Holly Goldberg Sloan & Meg Wolitzer

To Night Owl from Dogfish is the story of Avery and Bett.  They are both 12-year-old girls and both are being raised by a single, gay dad. The story begins with an email from Bett to Avery.  They have never met, but each has received information from her father that the two girls will be … Continue reading

THE PARKER INHERITANCE by Varian Johnson…2020 LOVELACE nominee Division I & II

Part historical fiction, part mystery and part contemporary middle years coming-of-age story, The Parker Inheritance weaves many themes into its complex, but highly structured, plot. The main character is Candice Miller.  She is twelve years old and her parents have separated. She and her mother have come to Lambert, South Carolina to stay while their … Continue reading

WITH THE FIRE ON HIGH by Elizabeth Acevedo

WOW!  I cannot say enough how much I LOVED With the Fire on High! Emoni Santiago is one of my new favorite characters in literature. She’s extraordinary.  Her mother was Jamaican and her father is Puerto Rican.  She has always lived with her paternal grandmother; her father shows up for about a month (usually July) out … Continue reading

THE BRIDGE HOME by Padma Venkatraman

The Bridge Home is Viji’s story.  Viji is eleven and her sister, Rukku, is a year older.  They live in Chennai, India with their mother and father.  Viji’s father is often angry and violent.  When her father’s brutality toward her mother spills over onto Viji and her sister, Viji makes the decision run away. Rukku is … Continue reading

A GOOD KIND OF TROUBLE by Lisa Moore Ramee

A Good Kind of Trouble centers around Shayla, a 12-year-old girl beginning junior high with her two best friends. The main focus of the story is the fact that–as so often happens in those middle years–Shayla is seeing her friendships, her perceptions of others and the world around her change from the comfortable and familiar to … Continue reading

TOWERS FALLING by Jewell Parker Rhodes….a 2020 LOVELACE nominee Division I & II

Jewell Parker Rhodes says very clearly in her Author’s Note for this book that she wanted to write a book that teachers could use to teach children about 9/11.  Towers Falling accomplishes that goal.  It offers adults a way of introducing conversations and history about something that remains an extremely emotional and terrifying–some would same … Continue reading

SONG FOR A WHALE by Lynne Kelly

Song for a Whale was a happy surprise for me!  I read this book because the Mock Newbery group that I belong to on Goodreads voted for it to be our June 2019 read. (I did not vote for it.)  I didn’t really know what to expect but I wasn’t all that excited about reading … Continue reading

NEW KID by Jerry Craft

New Kid is a fabulous graphic novel about Jordan Banks.  Jordan is in 7th Grade.  Jordan loves to draw and wants to go to Art School.  We meet Jordan as he begins attending Riverdale Academy Day School.  Riverdale is a school in an upscale part of town;  Jordan has to take a long city bus … Continue reading

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