Author: Grimes, Nikki
When Garvey joins the chorus at school his newly discovered talent for singing gives him both the confidence to accept himself and a language his father will finally understand--the language of music.
Download a Teacher's Guide
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 3.60
Points: 1.0 Quiz: 182907
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: 3-5
Reading Level: 3.50
Points: 4.0 Quiz: 68970
Kirkus Reviews (+) (07/15/16)
School Library Journal (00/07/16)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (00/10/16)
The Hornbook (00/09/16)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 07/01/2016 Gr 4–8—Grimes's latest is a sensitively written middle grade novel in verse that takes its syllable count from Japanese tanka. Garvey is an overweight boy who is teased at school and whose father constantly prods him to be more like his athletic older sister, Angie. But Garvey has a best friend (Joe), an open heart (which leads him to a new friend, Manny), and, as readers learn midway through the book, a talent for singing, which lands him a coveted solo in the school's chorus concert. Through that talent, Garvey finds a way to connect with his father and combat his bullies' rude remarks with a newfound strength of purpose. Those who thought Planet Middle School's Joylin was a remarkably lifelike portrait of an angsty yet kind adolescent will fall hard for Garvey, a tender, sincere boy who dislikes athletics. Grimes writes about adolescent friendships in a way that feels deeply human. VERDICT A short, sweet, satisfying novel in verse that educators and readers alike will love.—Abigail Garnett, Brooklyn Public Library - Copyright 2016 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
School Library Journal - 12/01/2016 Gr 4–8—Garvey can't quite live up to his father's traditional expectations of masculinity. He would rather sing and ponder space travel than undertake any athletic endeavor. But a chance chorus recital presents a turning point for their relationship: "I stand before the mirror,/smiling at a boy/whose frame is familiar/but changed, unfinished—all me." Using tanka, Grimes expertly crafts a family life that is deeply intimate yet inviting—a story of small but powerful transformations. - Copyright 2016 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.