I'm back with another Marvelous Middle Grade read! Marvelous Middle Grade Monday is the brainchild of Shannon Whitney Messenger, who thinks Middle Grade deserves more online attention that it's been getting, and I agree! So check back every Monday for my take on great Middle Grade reads.*
It’s the start of the school year, and nothing feels right to Justin. He didn’t get the teacher he wanted, he’s not in the same class as his best friend, and his little sister, Elizabeth, is starting kindergarten at his school. Elizabeth doesn’t seem nervous at all. Justin is very nervous about third grade. And to top it off, he’s lost his favorite stuffed animal, but he can’t tell anyone, because technically he’s too old to still have stuffed animals. Right? Here is third grade in all its complicated glory—the friendships, the fears, and the advanced math. Acclaimed author Rachel Vail captures third grade with a perfect pitch, and Matthew Cordell’s line art is both humorous and touching. As Justin bravely tries to step out of his shell, he will step into readers’ hearts.
And I have to say that this book does not disappoint. The voice is pitch perfect - I can hear my son, who is quite the third-grade worrywart himself, on every page. And I was struck by the skill with which Vail captures the diary voice, while at the same time managing to make every plot point and turn of events relevant to the story and to the development of the character. This was a great read, and it was one that both my son and I enjoyed. Check it out!
And be sure to check out Shanon's blog HERE for more MMGM!
*Except for the past couple of weeks. I dislocated my shoulder - pantyhose + wooden stairs = bad, people. Don't do it. And typing with one arm in a sling? Slower than frozen molasses. So I haven't posted in a while - but I'm back! My shoulder is stiff, but at least I can move it enough to type!