Congratulations, Susan! I'll get your book out to you pronto.
And now we return to our regular Monday broadcast, er, feature, MMGM. See Shannon Messenger's blog for the links to other Marvelous Middle Grade Monday posts.
The Thing About Jellyfish by Ali Benjamin (Sept 22, 2015, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, ages 10 and up)
Synopsis (from Indiebound): After her best friend dies in a drowning accident, Suzy is convinced that the true cause of the tragedy must have been a rare jellyfish sting--things don't just happen for no reason. Retreating into a silent world of imagination, she crafts a plan to prove her theory--even if it means traveling the globe, alone. Suzy's achingly heartfelt journey explores life, death, the astonishing wonder of the universe...and the potential for love and hope right next door.
Why I recommend it: Beautiful writing and an expertly crafted plot. The simple, yet luminous language -- and Suzy's earnest desire -- makes this a joy to read, even though the subject matter is weighty with sadness. It's easy to see why The Thing About Jellyfish is a National Book Award Finalist (winners will be announced November 18) and has earned starred reviews from PW, Booklist, School Library Journal and others.
Suzy's grief is heartbreakingly realistic. I lost a good friend at age 10 (she rode her bike across a busy street and never saw the truck that hit her), so this moving story affected me deeply. This book should also win at least a Newbery honor in January.
Favorite line: They are moving silently, endlessly, all of them, through the darkness of the sea (from pg. 109).
Bonus: You're bound to learn something about jellyfish!
Have you read The Thing About Jellyfish? If not, what MG novels have you read that deal poignantly with grief?