Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Book review - Dream On, Amber

Title: Dream On, Amber
Author: Emma Shevah
Genre: realistic fiction
Similar books: Secrets of Selkie Bay by Shelley Moore Thomas
                     All the Answers by Kate Messner
Summary: Amber has never had close friends. Going into middle school, she's afraid making friends will be harder than ever. She's Japanese Italian, very short for her age, has a "ridiculous" name, and her cell phone is seriously outdated. She's beginning to feel her father's absence in a big way, especially now that her sister, Bella, expects their father to show up for her birthday. It's up to Amber to solve their problems.

My opinion: The first year of middle school is a great source for material in middle grade novels. sixth grade tends to be when many things change: new classmates, new school, new expectations, new pressures. Kids start looking at themselves and others differently. Shevah handles this deftly, showing us a girl beginning to take on new responsibilities while still responding to situations and stresses in a child-like way (she does, after all, invent an imaginary dad to talk to). And like many young people, she does her best to work through her problems without adult involvement. With a largely realistic ending, this is a book I can easily see giving to young girls.

More information: Dream On, Amber releases October 6.
Advance Reader Copy provided by NetGalley.

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