Monday, June 6, 2016

A Book for Kids that Teaches Optimism

I love it when one of those "touchy feely" books gets me right through the heart!  This one did that in spades and I hate overly emotional narratives,  The main character is a delight and the story is so well written that kids will be rooting for our main character from the first chapter.  This one is quite a gem.

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Title: Just My Luck

Author: Cammie McGovern

Target: Grades 4-6

Series: No

What this book is about: 
Benny is having a tough year.  His best friend moved away and he has to make new friends.  His brother George, who is autistic, can kill it on a bike, but Benny hasn’t ridden in two years after a bad fall.  When his dad finally convinces him to go to the track to practice his biking skills, they crash, which triggers a brain aneurism in his father.  It sends his dad to the emergency room and on to a tough recovery.  Oh and did I mention his teacher seems to never see him?   He feels invisible at school. How will Benny get through this year?

Why I love this book:
  • First off Benny is just a wonderfully written character.  He is realistic and caring.  I appreciated that even through the tough stuff Benny has a loving family and people around who care deeply.  His friendships and struggles feel real and not exaggerated for the story.
  • While I do not have a child with autism, if you have a child or know a child who struggles with  autism, this book is a wonderful reminder of how special these children can be in your life.  It isn’t always easy to manage, in fact sometimes it is downright hard, but the book does a realistic job at portraying the gifts Benny’s brother brings to the family.
  • I couldn’t put the book down.  I read it in one day.  McGovern’s writing just sweeps you into the story.  I hate sad stories, and this one has some tough stuff, but Benny is such a delight that I had no problem getting through this book, rooting for Benny all the way.
Who this book is for: 
Fans of The Meaning of Maggie, Counting by 7s or any book by Joan Bauer will absolutely be the right audience for this story.  For any child that likes realistic fiction, have them give this book a try!

Final thoughts: 
This story took me out of my book funk and got me excited about kid lit after a bit of a drought finding compelling stories.  

To purchase this book:
Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Just My Luck.  A portion of each purchase will go to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.

1 comment:

  1. This book was a bit too sad for my taste, although I did love the bikes on the cover! You would LOVE the 48 hour book challenge, and your Younger Members of Staff look old enough to leave you alone while you read! There are years of blog posts to investigate: